Man Arrested for Murder of East Harlem Transgender Woman

By Ben Fractenberg on August 17, 2011 4:07pm | Updated on August 17, 2011 9:28pm

Camila Guzman came to the United States from Chile so that she could lead an open life as a transgender woman, said friends.
Camila Guzman came to the United States from Chile so that she could lead an open life as a transgender woman, said friends.
View Full Caption
DNAinfo/Jeff Mays

EAST HARLEM — A 25-year-old Brooklyn man was arrested for brutally stabbing his transgender East Harlem girlfriend to death, police said Wednesday.

Equan Southall was charged with murder in the Aug. 1 death of Camila Guzman. They had been in a relationship for four months, police said.

The suspect had five prior arrests, including grand larceny and possession of a concealed weapon, officials said.

Police found Guzman lying face down inside her apartment at 170 E. 110th St. with multiple stab wounds to her back. She was pronounced dead at the scene.

Ejeris Dixon, deputy director in charge of community organizing and public advocacy for the New York City Anti-Violence Project said her group will be following the trial and checking up with police and the district attorney's office about Guzman's death.

"We continue to support Camila's friends and family as they work to ensure justice for her during this challenging time," said Dixon.

Guzman, who police said was in her 40s, moved to New York from Chile nine years ago to live openly as a transgender woman, friends and community activists said.

"She came to the United States and she was herself. She lived her dreams," said M. Dru Levasseur, transgender rights attorney for Lambda Legal at a vigil for Guzman held last Thursday. "And she should not have been killed for that."

Police said they were not clear on a motive for the killing.

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement