Puebla trans beauty queen murdered

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Samantha, a trans beauty queen from Puebla, was intentionally murdered; FGE avoids talking to family

The 23-year-old girl died on August 20, in Atlixco, Puebla, after being intentionally hit by a car.

Photo Special by Lucero hernandez August 31, 2020


Samantha Rosales Barrios’ parents, siblings and grandparents set up chairs for their novena in the patio of the house. The silence is suddenly broken by the screams and crying of the grandmother with whom Samantha, a trans woman, lived until on Thursday, August 20, when she was killed by a car while riding a motorcycle in Atlixco, Puebla . 

“She said she was going to die being queen and that’s how she did, she died being queen,” said her brother Silvestre Flores Rosales, five years younger than Samantha. 

Between tears he remembers his 23-year-old sister, who in 2019 obtained the title of “Señorita Atlixco Gay” from the firm Carlos y Meche, the most prestigious in the national gay community. 

Although it seems like one more in the series of homicides in Puebla, the murder of Samantha also warns of the persistent hatred towards transgender women. Her crown full of glitters hangs in her room, a room with a cement floor; at the other end, a crucifix. 

Her plush animals rest on his bed. The curtain in the room was on the floor. Her mother lifts her up and with a smile notices that apparently Samantha came to visit them because the curtain was well fastened. 

Samantha was found dead at dawn on Thursday, August 20, on the pavement on Ferrocarriles Boulevard, in Atlixco, Puebla, where she was originally from. 

Surveillance videos in the area show that a car hit the motorcycle on which she and a passenger were riding, both fell. The passenger got up, took the motorcycle and left, leaving Samantha on the ground. 

Her grandfather received the call that alerted his family to the young woman’s death. When they arrived at the scene, they were prevented from approaching the girl’s body. Although they explained to the municipal police that the victim was their daughter, they did not let them pass. 

Her parents, Fabiola Rosales and Silvestre Flores, never saw the experts arrive to protect their daughter’s body. It was the funeral home that raised the body. 

The State Attorney General’s Office (FGE) in Puebla has not wanted to attend to the family. All the parents know is that that night Samantha had gone out and the her friends and never came back home. 

For her father, the work of the Prosecutor’s Office has been “deficient.” They even asked them to call a friend of Samantha to come to testify, to try to locate the person responsible. 

The family is clear that it was a murder and asks for justice. They want to find the murderer and that is why they organized, together with the LGBTT + collective, two demonstrations on Friday, August 28, and Saturday, August 29 at the FGE and at the House of Justice in Atlixco, where they placed ribbons with the demand for justice. 

On August 21, the prosecutor Gilberto Higuera Bernal declared that they are investigating Samantha’s murder as femicide, considering “the quality of the person” and “the violence” with which she was murdered. 

The Penal Code of Puebla in its article 338 Bis establishes a penalty of 40 to 60 years in prison and a fine of 500 to 1,000 days’ salary for whoever commits a femicide. If the aggravation of hatred established in article 330 Bis is included, by gender or sexual preferences, the sanction would increase by another 20 years. 

“They were riding exclusively on the motorcycle because the car could well go straight, but it rammed them and the other person on the motorcycle did not even bend down, did not help her, got on his motorcycle and never saw Sam again (…) pity because she was lying there and maybe could’ve been saved. The person on the motorcycle, if he had acted in a good way, would have stayed there. We would have thanked him for accompanying her, but he didn’t, he cowardly went away, ”said her father. 

“We demand justice because she did not deserve to die in those circumstances; we want them to pay. We don’t want the process to drag on ”, emphasized her mother before starting the novena that they held in the house that Samantha lived in La Magdalena Axocopan.

At 16 years of age, Samantha decided to start using hormones. Her parents and siblings supported her. She studied a university degree, learned Zumba, and became an instructor. She loved the catwalks and competing in beauty pageants, she achieved what she wanted, and she only needed to write her book. 

She wanted to share her story, to say: “I was born a man, but I was transforming myself and I want young people who have that concern to do so, not to get stuck,” shared Fabiola, her mother, in an interview with Animal Político.

Source: Animal Político

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