A group of Broward demonstrators protesting police brutality took time on Sunday to mourn the loss of a transgender woman who police say was shot and killed Friday evening, shedding light on a larger issue in the United States.
Organizers with Blacks Lives Matter left a memorial for 27-year-old Bree in Pompano Beach - more than a half mile away from where police say she was killed.
According to Broward Sheriff's Office, Bree was found dead with an apparent gunshot wound at her Pompano Beach residence near 3rd Avenue and Northwest 12th Street.
“I cannot speculate as to their motives for not coming forward, but we do believe that there are people out there that can help us with this case who we haven’t been able to speak with yet," BSO Sgt. Brian Tutler said in a news conference Monday.
Tutler said there were hundreds of people on the scene when officers responded.
“The witness accounts that we have are very basic, and they are coming from mostly people who got involved after the shooting," Tutler said.
“We decided to build this altar for Bree because we are tired of Black Trans Women dying at astronomical rates across our country and our local communities," Tiffany Burks, a Black Lives Matter community organizer, said at the memorial Sunday.
Bree's death highlights a charged issue across the country - with Florida being one of two states that sees the most fatal acts of violence against the transgender community, according to the Human Rights Campaign.
So far, in 2020, the Human Rights Campaign reports at least 18 transgender or gender nonconforming people have died by being shot, or by violence.
“We know that if Black women are not free, Black trans women are not free, none of us are free," Burks said.
Police are asking any person with information on Bree’s death to contact authorities at 954-321-4377, or contact Broward Crime Stoppers at 954-493-TIPS.