D.C. police are seeking help from the public in identifying a suspect or suspects responsible for the stabbing death of a transgender woman whose body was found along the street on the 2000 block of Gallaudet Street, N.E. around 3 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 7.
A D.C. police incident report says Jasmine “Star” Mack, 36, was found lying in the street unconscious in front of 2005 Gallaudet St., N.E. by a citizen who flagged down a nearby police officer for help.
The officer “located the decedent in an unconscious and unresponsive state with an apparent stab wound to their right leg,” the police report says. The report says the officer called for an ambulance and someone with the D.C. Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department, in consultation with a physician, pronounced Mack deceased at the scene at 3:10 a.m.
It says her remains were taken to the office of the city’s Chief Medical Examiner for an autopsy to determine the official cause and manner of death.
Andrew McArdle, a spokesperson for the medical examiner’s office, told the Washington Blade on Monday that the cause of death was a “stab wound of the right lower extremity” and the death has been classified as a homicide. McArdle said he didn’t have access to specific findings of an autopsy, but he said the medical examiner’s office has found that a severe stab wound to a person’s leg can lead to fatal bleeding.
A spokesperson said police have no further details to release at this time other than the incident was not listed as a suspected hate crime. The spokesperson, Alaina Gertz, told the Blade the case is under active investigation by the homicide unit and a decision on whether to classify the murder as a hate crime could change if new information is obtained.
Police are urging anyone with information about the incident to contact police at 202-727-9099. Anonymous information may also be submitted to the police TEXT TIP LINE by sending a text message to 50411, police said in a statement announcing the Mack homicide.
“The Metropolitan Police Department currently offers a reward of up to $25,000 to anyone that provides information which leads to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for each homicide committed in the District of Columbia,” the statement says.
Longtime D.C. transgender activist Earline Budd said she knew Mack, who Budd said preferred to go by the name Star. Budd said Mack was a client at the D.C. community services and sex worker advocacy group HIPS, where Budd works.
The narrow, one-block-long 2000 block of Gallaudet Street, N.E., where Mack’s body was found, is in a mixed warehouse and residential area that is two blocks from the section of Okie Street, N.E. where the popular nightclubs Ivy City Smoke House and City Winery are located. Both clubs have hosted LGBTQ events.
City Winery became the subject of recent news media stories when it announced plans to move to another location because of what it says have been serious crime problems in the Okie Street area impacting its customers. Ivy City Smokehouse responded by saying it disputes claims that the street where the two clubs are located has been riddled with crime.
It couldn’t immediately be determined why Mack was at the location on Gallaudet Street at the time she was attacked and fatally stabbed. The D.C. police statement announcing her murder says she had no fixed address at the time of her death. But the police incident report says her last known address was 828 Evarts St., N.E., which is located about a mile north of Gallaudet Street where she was found deceased.