The body of Natasha Keianna, a transgender woman missing since just after Christmas, was found Tuesday, Jan. 12, on Detroit’s west side.
Keianna was found in her own Saturn SUV at Coyle and Vassar Streets in a residential neighborhood. A nearby resident, who declined to identify himself to Fox2, said the car had been parked outside his family’s home for two weeks, a period during which he had called the police twice.
“They finally came out,” he said.
The length of time between the man’s first call and the police’s discovery of the body is upsetting to Keianna’s mother.
“A week, my baby sat there in the car a week and froze to death,” Bernetha Shelton told Fox2. “They kept calling Detroit police and they never came out.”
Keianna was last seen leaving her home on Dec. 26. Her family would file a missing person’s report on Jan. 6. Upon discovery, police said her body showed no signs of decomposition and there was no apparent cause of death.
“I think it’s a tragic situation that this trans woman sat in her car for a week and half to two weeks,” said Michelle-Fox Phillips, founder and executive director of the Gender-Identity Network Alliance.
While police investigate, friends and family remember Keianna with love.
“She was a sweet girl,” said friend Bridget Butts. “I didn’t really know her to get in a lot of trouble. I was kind of the troublemaker.
“I will remember the way that she dressed,” Butts went on. “You knew her by the way that she dressed. She always had a nice heal on. She liked tall heals. But she didn’t try to flaunt it.”
The Trans Sistas of Color Project – Detroit also issued a statement.
“TSCOP-D would like to extend our heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of Natasha Keianna,” said agency Vice President Jey’nce Mizrahi Poindexter. “We have not been made privy to all the details and information surrounding the loss of our sister but we eagerly await more news. We will continue to love and appreciate each life represented in our community as all life has value and meaning.”
Police are asking anyone with information about Keianna’s death to call the department’s 8th Precinct Investigative Unit at 313-596-5840 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-SPEAK-UP.