June 23, 2024 The Newspaper Serving LGBT Los Angeles

Two Men Charged After Three Trans Women Are Attacked In Hollywood

Two men have been charged with robbery against three transgender women on the evening of Aug. 17 in Hollywood.

Carlton Callaway, 29, and Davion Williams, 22, will face charges including robbery and assault in connection with the attack on Hollywood Blvd according to a news release issued by the L.A. County district attorney’s office.

Transgender Instagram influencer Eden the Doll, Jaslene Whiterose and Joslyn Flawless were  attacked while on the Walk of Fame around 2 a.m. The women were verbally and then physically assaulted which was captured on video and streamed live as it was happening.

Callaway allegedly befriended the three victims and later assaulted them while Williams allegedly joined the attack and stole from one of the women. 

Carlton Alexander Callaway of Compton faces one felony count each of grand theft from the person of another, second-degree robbery, criminal threats, attempted second-degree robbery, assault by means of force likely to produce great bodily injury and battery with serious bodily injury. Callaway also used a steel rod as a weapon during the attack. 

Davion Anthony Williams of Compton faces one felony count each of grand theft and assault with a deadly weapon, which was a rideshare scooter used during the attack. 

The case includes allegations that the crimes committed were hate crimes after police alleged they made derogatory comments about the victims’ gender identities during the alleged attack. 

Deputy District Attorney Richard Ceballos of the Hate Crimes Unit is the assigned prosecutor.

The district attorney’s office rejected charges against a third suspect arrested in the case, according to a law enforcement official with knowledge of the situation.

Callaway was arrested in mid-August by police in Bakersfield, but was released a few days later when prosecutors referred the case back for further investigation under the pressure of the LGBTQ+ community and activists. Callaway’s release from jail drew outrage among the LGBTQ community forcing action to be taken. 

Callaway and Williams deny knowing each other despite being from the same neighborhood. 

It was not immediately clear if Callaway or Williams had attorneys who could speak on their behalf Tuesday evening.

The district attorney’s office said arraignment would take place at a later date.

If convicted as charged, Callaway faces up to 13 years and four months in prison, and Williams faces up to eight years and four months in prison, according to the district attorney’s office.

Commenting on the incident, L.A. City Council member Mitch O’Farrell said his district does not welcome such conduct. He also asked the onlookers to contact him so they could apologize to the victims.

There have been at least 26 transgender or gender non-conforming people killed by acts of violence in the United States in 2020, according to the Human Rights Campaign. Last year, advocates tracked 27 killings, the majority of whom were Black transgender women, the HRC says.

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