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‘Possible Bias Incident’: Vermont Transgender Man Dies After Brutal Beating


"The department has not ruled out the victim's transgender status as a possible additional motive ... ."

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A transgender man from Vermont died over the weekend from injuries he sustained during a brutal beating last week at a homeless encampment, the Burlington Police Department said.

Police announced in a press release that 38-year-old Amos Beede, a transient, was found lying on the ground unconscious at 11 a.m. on May 23. It was apparent that she had been assaulted.

Beede was pronounced dead Sunday at the University of Vermont Medical Center in Burlington.

Police said Beede, who was born female, identified as a male. But they noted that the alleged attack, which likely occurred hours before Beede was discovered unconscious, may not have been related to Beede's transgender status.

"The department has not ruled out the victim's transgender status as a possible additional motive, and will seek to determine what role if any it may have played as the investigation continues," Burlington Police Chief Brandon del Pozo wrote. "Until the attendant facts are clarified, we will continue to view this homicide as a possible bias incident. We will release further information as it develops."

Lt. Shawn Burke told the Burlington Free Press in an email that the attack does not appear to have been random.

Police identified two persons of interest in the case: Erick Averill, 21, and Myia Barber, 23. Police did not say whether they were suspects in Beede’s assault. Both Averill and Barber are transient residents of Burlington, the Free Press reported.

"This attack was directed at Amos," Burke wrote. "There was more than one perpetrator, the investigation is ongoing and to share much more could compromise our efforts."

Beede endured head trauma, including facial fractures, multiple blunt force injuries to her face and head and a number of broken ribs, police told the Free Press. She was diagnosed with bleeding on the brain, also known as a subdural hematoma. An autopsy by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner will reveal the precise cause of her death, the Free Press reported.

The Burlington Police Department and the Chittenden County State’s Attorneys Office are still working together to investigate the case.

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