Two transgender people murdered in two days on Cleveland's west side

CLEVELAND - Cleveland police are investigating the murders of two transgender people in as many days.

Police said 52-year old Betty Skinner was found dead on Thursday in her west side apartment. A day later, Brittany Stergis was found shot to death in a car on the west side of Cleveland. Police said the murders of the two transgender individuals do not appear to be related.

“It’s raw -- it’s very real. There is anger, fear, outrage,”said Phyliss Harris, Executive Director of The LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland.

Karen Gross and her husband started the group Transfamily of Cleveland nearly 25 years ago. Gross said Skinner would attend meetings.

“She was a very pleasant person, she had cerebral palsy and talking was difficult. She would come in a wheelchair,” said Gross.

Transfamily of Cleveland is a group established to help transgender people and their families.

Police have not made any arrests in the two cases. The FBI said they are ready to help Cleveland police if needed.

“They do their investigation and once the motivation is determined, the motive behind the crime, they let us know and we can look at it as a hate crime if deemed one,” said Special Agent Vicki Anderson.

If you have any information about the murders, call Cleveland police.

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