Jasmine Infiniti and London Jade, two trans women, were brutally attacked by a group of up to 10 men in the Bushwick neighborhood of Brooklyn on Saturday. Another, unnamed trans woman fled the scene unharmed.
"Basically they just started screaming transphobic slurs at us, calling us faggots and transformers," Infiniti said. "He said, 'Para ti? (For you?)' to one of his friends and laughed," Infiniti recalled. "I turned around and said 'Para quien?! (For whom?)' Like, 'Who is my body for?!' Even more so, why is it a joke to you guys?"
After refusing to back down, Infiniti attempted to go to the liquor store the drinking men were frequenting. She was refused service. On her way out she tried to take pictures of the harassers on her phone.
"While I might not be able to get them for calling me names, I decided to try to ruin their day the way they were ruining mine by taking pictures of them with open containers to give to police," Infiniti said.
The situation escalated from there, with the group punching Infiniti numerous times. Jade's eye was slashed by a boxcutter by a woman in the attacking group. The fight attracted a crowd.
"People showed up on four wheelers or whatever. Cars pulled up and one ran over my phone," Infiniti recalled. "Everybody was asking the girl what was going on. Her answer was, 'Transformers.'"
Infiniti said that when police arrived they were far from helpful: "They were asking us about what we were wearing and if we initially said anything to these people ... I knew they were trying to insinuate we were sex workers or something."
"I took a stand and was prepared to martyr myself," Infiniti added. "If you’re going to kill me, just kill me. I’m tired of living in fear of someone wanting me dead ... This is not just for me, it’s for the little Jasmines that come behind me, for future trans people so they don’t have to live with this."
Infiniti is a notable DJ in the LGBTQ music scene and had been preparing to embark on a European tour but now is recovering at Bellevue Hospital, where she will have reconstructive surgery to repair her jaw: "My mouth will be wired shut," she said. "I have an extremely swollen face and lots of pain. I’m on a lot of medication."
Jade, an up-and-coming rapper, has shared her experience of PTSD following the incident on Facebook:
A YouCaring page has been started to help the two pay for their emergency medical bills.
12 trans women have been killed in 2017 so far. 27 hate crimes concerning "sexual orientation" have been reported in New York City this year. The Southern Poverty Law Center has noted that hate groups, in general, have been on the rise in the past two years.