Local trans woman memorialized

PAHOKEE — A Pahokee resident murdered on Sept. 4 became the 18th transgender woman to be murdered in the United States this year (and the 17th black trans woman slain in 2019), the Palm Beach County Human Rights Council said on its Facebook page Monday, Sept. 9.

The victim was Bee Love Slater.

The PBCHRC reposted a story, written by Trudy King of The Advocate (advocate.com) detailing the death, excerpted verbatim here:

Report from Advocate
“Florida transgender woman Bee Love Slater was found burned to death — beyond recognition — in a car last Wednesday.

“Friends say they believe she was targeted because of her identity.

Bee Love Slater

“Slater, of Pahokee, was found in the town of Clewiston, about 30 miles away. It took investigators from the Hendry County Sheriff’s Office until Friday to publicly identify her. Her identity was first reported by NewNowNext.

“But a close friend of hers, Kenard Wade, said he was sure she was the victim as soon as he saw photos of her burned-out car.

“ ‘That’s her car,’ he told Fort Myers TV station WINK. ‘I know that. I know her car.’ “He said she knew someone wanted to harm her, and she wanted to get away.

“Another friend, Desmond Vereen, told TV station WBBH that he thinks Slater’s identity was a motive in the crime. ‘I feel like she was targeted because of her lifestyle,’ he said. Vereen, who organized a vigil held Friday in Slater’s memory, described her as ‘a people person.’

“ ‘She loved to be around people and meeting new people too because of her new lifestyle that she transitioned into,’ he said.

“Despite the assertions of Slater’s friends, investigators with the Hendry County Sheriff’s Office say they have yet to determine a motive for the crime, but they did say it’s one of the most brutal murders they’ve ever seen.

“Anyone with information is asked to call the Hendry County Sheriff’s Office at 863-674-5600 or Southwest Florida Crime Stoppers at 800-780-8477.

“Constant reports of violence against our community are difficult to read, especially as we continue to face historic rates. If you or someone you know is experiencing violence, you can reach out to the Anti-Violence Project’s free bilingual (English/Spanish) national hotline at (212) 714-1141 or report online for support.”

Friend put together a vigil

Mr. Vereen organized a candlelight vigil that took place Friday, Sept. 6, issuing a news release regarding her death:

“Residents of Pahokee, Belle Glade, and South Bay are gathering at a candlelight vigil to honor the life of local trans woman ‘Bee Love.’

“Love was a local community member and Palm Beach County LGBTQ socialite who was brutally slain. Her body was found tied up in her burning Chrysler PT Cruiser suffering from multiple gunshot wounds.

“The story and details surrounding Love’s death are still unknown. There were suggestive death threat posts link to Love’s death the week of her murder, as well as message she shared with her best friend feeling that she would be harmed. Love was a Pahokee native but had friends in West Palm Beach, Riviera Beach, Belle Glade, South Bay and Pahokee. She was known for her humor, giving, love and social media personality.”

His post noted that the event was at 7:30 p.m. Friday and lasted two to three hours, at 1474 Muck City Road in Pahokee.

You are encouraged to leave relevant comments but engaging in personal attacks, threats, online bullying or commercial spam will not be allowed. All comments should remain within the bounds of fair play and civility. (You can disagree with others courteously, without being disagreeable.) Feel free to express yourself but keep an open mind toward finding value in what others say. To report abuse or spam, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box.

Facebook Comment