Transgender woman arrested for being assaulted by a cop

On December 1st Chloe Moore, a transgender woman living in DC, pepper sprayed a man after he reportedly hurled transphobic slurs at her and pushed her. The man then chased Moore, threw her to the ground, pinned her down, and pulled out a badge identifying himself as Officer Raphael Radon of the DC Police Department.

Radon and his friends have their own version of the story, of course, but Moore’s is backed up by an uninvolved witness. The Washington Blade discovered that the two police officers who responded to the scene determined Radon started the altercation and may have committed a bias-related assault. But supervisor Captain Michelle Williams overrode their recommendation and had Moore charged and arrested. Officer Radon has not been charged with anything.

“What’s especially disturbing about this case is that it features several flagrant violations of MPD’s general order on dealing with trans people,” said Alison Gill, a DC Trans Coalition attorney. “Medical attention was apparently not provided promptly, and the use of degrading, transphobic language is expressly forbidden.” DC does have some good civil rights laws on the books, and there are many officers on the force who have been willingly trained by the DC Trans Coalition and its allies in cultural competency. Gill’s statement continues,

“What this incident shows us is that training self-selected volunteers is only a small step toward ensuring that MPD officers fully comply with DC’s human rights law. We want to see a swift rejection of this kind of behavior from the highest levels within MPD, along with a real plan for making sure that every law enforcement officer knows and follows the law, including mandatory training for the entire force.”

Last week Change.org set up a petition to the DC Police Department saying Officer Radon should be suspended pending investigation, Moore should have the charges should be examined and dropped if they’re found to be based on discrimination, and that police officers should undergo mandatory training. I couldn’t agree more. Click here to sign the petition.

Boston, MA

Jos Truitt is Executive Director of Development at Feministing. She joined the team in July 2009, became an Editor in August 2011, and Executive Director in September 2013. She writes about a range of topics including transgender issues, abortion access, and media representation. Jos first got involved with organizing when she led a walk out against the Iraq war at her high school, the Boston Arts Academy. She was introduced to the reproductive justice movement while at Hampshire College, where she organized the Civil Liberties and Public Policy Program’s annual reproductive justice conference. She has worked on the National Abortion Federation’s hotline, was a Field Organizer at Choice USA, and has volunteered as a Pro-Choice Clinic Escort. Jos has written for publications including The Guardian, Bilerico, RH Reality Check, Metro Weekly, and the Columbia Journalism Review. She has spoken and trained at numerous national conferences and college campuses about trans issues, reproductive justice, blogging, feminism, and grassroots organizing. Jos completed her MFA in Printmaking at the San Francisco Art Institute in Spring 2013. In her "spare time" she likes to bake and work on projects about mermaids.

Jos Truitt is an Executive Director of Feministing in charge of Development.

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