A trans teenager was murdered in Sergipe, Brazil in a reportedly targeted attack.

Gabbi Mattos,17, was fatally shot early morning on February 19 in Aracaju, the capital of Sergipe in the Northeast Region. 

Trigger Warning: This story has details of a transphobic murder, which might be distressing to some readers. For 24 hour crisis support and suicide prevention call Lifeline on 13 11 14. For Australia-wide LGBTQI peer support call QLife on 1800 184 527 or webchat.

Official Version of Events Disputed

Officials from the Civil Police of the State of Sergipe have reported that Mattos was killed in a crossfire when two individuals started firing at each other. However, their version of events has been disputed by activists and witnesses. 

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Linda Brasil, the first trans woman elected councillor in Aracaju, tweeted, “we received through complaints from people who were at the place, that there was no exchange of fire, but that the criminal ran after the victim and shot the victim [with the] intention to kill her.”

“It’s really very strange that, in an alleged shooting, only she was shot and then in the head.”

Gabriel Vaquer, a reported witness, tweeted, “My God… They killed a 17-year-old trans teenager here in Aracaju. She was killed by 2 men shot at point-blank range in the head in the neighborhood where I was born and raised, the [Orlinha do Bairro Industrial]. PM investigates, but found that none of the site’s security cameras work.” 

Calls for Case to be Reopened

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Brasil is calling on officials to reopen the case, tweeting, “We need to pressure the Public Ministry and the Court of Justice, so that the case is reopened and the investigations.” 

According to Transrespect versus Transphobia Worldwide, a research project initiated by Transgender Europe, Brazil is the world’s deadliest country for the transgender community, with 33% of all trans murders happening in the country.

If you feel distressed reading the story, you can reach out to support services.

For 24 hour crisis support and suicide prevention call Lifeline on 13 11 14

For Australia-wide LGBTQI peer support call QLife on 1800 184 527 or webchat.

 

 

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