BALTIMORE (WJZ)— A transgender woman was found dead in a vacant Baltimore home. Her family says she was constantly tormented because of the way she looked.

Weijia Jiang reports city police are scrambling for clues in her murder.

Bright, loving and motivated. That’s how friends describe 25-year-old Tyra Trent—a transgender woman found dead over the weekend.

“He was very outgoing, dressed the way he wanted to dress, been the way he wanted to be,” said Brandy Grisson, neighbor.

“She loved people, loved animals, loved to talk to anybody,” said Sandy Rawls, Trans-United director.

Rawls, a close friend to Trent and the director of a transgender outreach group, was helping Trent pursue a GED. Rawls believes she was killed as a result of her appearance.

Police say on Saturday, someone found Trent’s lifeless body in a vacant city-owned house on Virginia Avenue.

“Preliminary ME reports indicate the victim died of asphyxiation or strangulation,” said Det. Kevin Brown, Baltimore City Police Department.

Though the circumstances of Trent’s death are unknown, Rawls says it’s typical for transgender women to end up on the streets. Homeless herself for two years, she says many feel they have nowhere else to go.

“We’re up and down, up and down trying to survive,” Rawls said. “If you don’t have that strong community support, family support to help you and uplift yourself, you can fall through the cracks easy as you can see.”

Court documents reveal Trent, whose legal name is Anthony, had been charged dozens of times of loitering, prostitution and drugs.

Rawls is working with city leaders to establish more resources for the transgender community to prevent other tragedies.

“We have to stop hating one another, stop hating to the point where you would kill them,” Rawls said.

Friends and family members are planning a candlelight vigil for Trent. 

Police have no suspects in this case.  They’re urging anyone with information to come forward.

Comments (26)
  1. Nightowl says:

    The transgender issue does not bother me at all, but I have a hard time having any sort of sympathy for someone who made a choice not to avail themselves of the free education the state provides so that they could get a job and support themselves. Trent chose to get involved in drugs, prostitution & other criminal activities instead of going to school and or working an honest job for a living and that was his choice. Such a choice seldom leads to good things and it is wrong to blame his transgender choice with the reality of the life drugs, crime and not completing school bring most.

    1. Scottieboy says:

      What free education the state provides? once you hit a certain age, they will provide NO education for free. The not completing high school could very well have been from a safety issue. If you fear for your life every day you attend school, how much choice do you have? I have permanent scars on my back from my ‘free’ schooling days.(I paid for that education by withstanding daily attacks.) Furthermore, most places won’t HIRE you for an ‘honest’ job when you do not have that GED, nevertheless if you are transgendered. I think you need to educate yourself a bit more about the issues involved before assuming that she had much choice in her life.

    2. Tyshaia Jolley says:

      @ NightowlRegardless of what he did, he was STILL a HUMAN BEING & no one should have decided when his LIFE should END! Show some respect.

      1. Rachel Indigo Cerise Baum says:


      2. jenifer says:

        am i the only one that noticed that this happend pretty close to where crissy polis was beaten! if you think this was a resolt of the way she lived think again! this killing was a resolt of the sentencing the girls that beat crissy got!

  2. Rick S says:

    Nightowl, the fact that you call being Transgendered shows how little you understand about the subject. You say she should just get a GED and a job. If it were that easy, every transgendered individual would do just that. But people, like yourself, mistakenly believe these people have a choice. So since you feel they have a choice, you feel they should choose to live to your standards. And for most people those standards are in glaring contrast to what is actually rooted inside themselves.

    1. Nightowl says:

      The issue is not about transgender at all and you have missed my point. The issue is that, if a person, regardless of physical appearance, manner of dress, sexuality, race, religion gender etc. choses to not stay in school and get the skills to get a job and CHOSES a life of drugs and crime, I have no sympathy for them. Quitting high school is a choice. Not taking the education offered while in jail/prison is also a choice. Taking drugs is a choice. Prostituting oneself and other crimes are a choice. People on the street will tell you they do not have a choice and therefore they become criminals, but they neglect to consider blaming the poor choices they made, such as quitting school, that led to them ending up on the streets in the first place. I believe it is society’s standards rather than mine that dictate that one should obtain the training and education necessary in order to get a job job to support oneself. It is not rocket science, most folks can do this, but it is a lot harder if you quit school and get messed up on drugs and get a criminal record.

      You seem to think transgendered people are the only people who have a “hard time”, but life is generally harder for anyone who is regarded as different by society. Unless you are lucky enough to be the sports star or pretty cheerleader in high school, odds are you will be given a hard time because of something. Most of us learn to live with all the things that we are and all that we are not and finish school, get jobs and become law abiding citizens.

      1. Alexis says:

        Is it their choice then, that the poor urban school they attend isn’t adequate in providing them with the skills needed to obtain a job-one that you have been so lucky to be prepared for? Or is it their choice when mom is too smacked to wake up and take them to school? Or when they don’t have any support or encouragement at all? It’s harder than you think to even have the opportunity to make choices when they have been made for you since the beginning. It’s not necessarily being “down on your luck” but living in a society/community that has failed you since you were born-it’s all they know.

  3. Rick S says:

    Call being it a choice ^^^^

    1. Trans Panthers Party (Core) says:

      She is a ‘she’ and not a ‘he’. A person who is transgender is not making a choice about who they are and expressing that on the outside, it’s natural.

      1. dwcjj says:


  4. beyonca day says:

    my throught’s and prayer’s goe’s out to this young person ‘s family this is such a terrible tragercy that someone would do this too such a person like this.i really hope that catch this person who this this to trent.these people are human being’s to .our own people need to stop judgeing a person for who they are and what they want to be.

  5. martin w says:

    the real point is someone making their place in our society had their life snuffed out. customary rejection of transgendered people put them out on fringes of society. Having to foot the bill to pay medical costs to change gender makes them prostitute. rejection and isolation leads to drug use to cope. Until we learn to embrace an individual being themselves, we will always have these tragedies.

    1. Pat G says:

      That’s BS! Lots of people have expensive elective cosmetic surgery done for a variety of reasons- from making themselves look the way they want to, correcting disfiguring birth defects or injuries to simply having the size and shape they desire. The majority of these people work an honest job to pay for it, they are not prostitutes. Rejection and isolation do not always lead to drug use, there are ways to cope without using drugs and the majority of people do not use illegal drugs. I have a lot of baggege from being abused and neglected as a child and do tend to keep to myself, but I earn an honest living, do not use drugs and have never been involved with prostitution. Transgender individuals are not the only ones who have to deal with being rejected, teased, ostracized etc, lots of people deal with that every day. They are also not the only people who are upset because their bodies do not look the way they wish they did. Transgenders are not doing much towards being accepted by society as long as they do drugs & become prostitutes as those are two things most of society does not embrace.

      1. uratroll says:

        Are you actually suggesting someone with a big nose, cleft lip, or minor disfigurement from a car accident experiences the same type of discrimination and contempt from society as trans people do? Trans people are beaten and humiliated on the streets, kicked out of their parents homes, rejected by family and friends, harassed at school, fired from jobs, brutally murdered. You have absolutely no clue what you’re talking about. You clearly do not understand the challenges the average trans person deals with. Please educate yourself on trans issues before passing judgement.

  6. Diane says:

    So sad. Transgender people need to be loved. Their loves are difficult.

  7. Chanda STALLWORTH says:

    I know both the men that found Trent & they did not care that she was trans-gendered she didn’t deserve to die that way not to mention why did it take almost a week to even put it in the news any and very other murder gets put in the news from day one I posted it on WJZ Facebook page right after it was reported why couldn’t trent’s murder get the same treatment as a murder in the county he has a family & he has friends that love him & want answers just like every1 else his family & friends are in my prayers

  8. Glo Glover says:

    the fact is being a TG is not a choice. if it was then why do 75% take their own life. as for living in the community and making a living..some have to turn to doing tricks just to eat.. some are moved to drugs to take away the pain of being an outcast.. There is a lot of misinformation about what a TG is.. and even in the TG community some don’t understand why they are the way they are… so I say Love everyone.. and hug a Tranny!

  9. Tracker says:

    No one knows why he was killed. The TG aspect may not have had anything to do with it, but the drugs and prostitution probably did.

    1. HollyinOKC says:

      I agree Tracker. Regardless of whether or not you are TG, if you put yourself out on the street to sell your body, chances are some pretty horrific things are going to happen to you. I believe this had more to do with prostitution than anything. I feel for her family and hope that they can find some peace in this investigation. It is terrible for any family to lose a member regardless of their social status..

    2. SMH says:

      It is possible that because Trent was a prostitute, maybe she tried to pick up a john and then whent he john realized that she was TG it made the john mad. It is sad, regardless of age, race, sex, social status or sexual preference that anyone is murdered and we are all humans. Whomever killed Trent deserves to be punished to fullest extent of the law and my heart and prayers go out for the family.

  10. Theodore says:

    Trent did not deserve to die, which was murder. That is totally offensive no matter what the issues around it. Nightowl is right. I am short and fat and at 62 years old I can tell you life has been an uphill climb the whole time. But, despite that, I fought the issues and the bigots, worked over 45 years, and am currently a successful salesman supplementing my social security. I am now self-employed due to heart problems. But, people can make a success out of themselves if they don’t give up. Of course they must conform somewhat to be accepted. But, they can still stay individualistic as long as it isn’t harmful to themselves or anyone else. There are a lot of starving artists. We must think and act realistic if we want to survive. I have lived out on the streets. It is easy to be a dropout. It is far more satisfying to keep fighting to earn ones own way. Trent is a casualty that shouldn’t have happened. I hope the murderer get caught.

  11. Debbie Beaulieu says:

    R.I.P. Ms. Trent…

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