Man accused of shooting transgender women said the police wouldn’t “come for a tranny”

A 23-year-old man named Denzell Thomas was charged for the shootings of multiple trans woman in Alabama, and records show he sent texts claiming the police wouldn’t come if he shot at a transgender sex worker. Currently held in the Jefferson County Jail with no bond, Thomas is charged with the murder of 30-year-old Jazzy Alford after housekeeping at the Kings Inn discovered her body Sept. 23. Before being charged for Alford’s death, Thomas was arrested and charged with first-degree robbery and attempted murder of another trans woman, Jessica, who survived, but was rushed to the hospital for a shattered jawbone and was forced to use feeding tubes. Doctors are still unsure if she’ll regain her ability to speak.

Police were able to identify Thomas partially because they received reports from a third trans woman named Larissa, who according to reports from The Daily Beast, claimed Thomas robbing her at gunpoint on Sept. 30 at America’s Best Inn in Homewood, Alabama, just three days before the murder of Alford. After allegedly threatening to shoot her and stealing her bag, which contained $20, her gun, identification and personal keepsakes, Larissa followed Thomas down the hotel stairs and immediately called the cops to report the robbery and give them the phone number the man had texted her from.

According to text transcripts Larissa shared with the The Daily Beast, after Thomas left with her things, she texted him warning the police would find him. She said:

“Bitch the police already got yo tag hoe. You [think] you can’t be touched but I’ma show you.”

His response was that nobody would care, and indicated a lack of remorse:

“Yea yea they ain’t gone come for a tranny, they ain’t stun yo ass then u black they went on bout they day.”

Larissa’s response indicated that she planned to press charges and had both Thomas’ full name (which she did) and an image of his face on her phone (which she technically didn’t). Jessica, who was later allegedly robbed by Thomas and caused his initial arrest, was in the room next to Larissa when this happened. According to reports from AL.com, the previous reports from Larissa detailing her location and robbery later helped police make connections between Jessica’s robbery and the murder of Alford.

Thomas hasn’t been charged for Larissa’s robbery, but is currently in jail awaiting trial for his multiple charges regarding his alleged crimes against Jessica and Alford. A total of 22 trans people have been murdered in 2016 already, the majority of whom were women of color, including Alford.