Transwoman among those detained in Baltimore riots, held in male cell block
A transgendered woman arrested during the Baltimore riots is being held in a male holding cell.
The woman’s name is not being released out of concern for her safety but her lawyer, Astrid Munn, told Mashable the Baltimore Police Department initially booked her client as a woman, as her identification clearly states. It was only when she was transferred to central booking facilities where she was told to remove her bra, forced to wear in a thin, revealing white shirt and put in a holding cell with other men.
Munn, who is a criminal defense attorney with the law firm Seddiq Law, said her client has identified as a woman since she was 14, and is now 30-years-old.
“In every respect she was a woman,” Munn said. “She stood in stark contrast to the other people in the jail, you know? It’s dudes.”
According to Munn, as her client was assigned bail, even the judge said, “you don’t look like a man.” Munn said her client was treated poorly and was inappropriately placed.
The woman was charged with fourth-degree burglary, which is a misdemeanor. Despite the charge, the woman’s bail was quickly pushed from its original price of $75,000 to $100,000. The woman reportedly makes about $300 per week at a salon and is also on public assistance.
Mirriam Seddiq, who runs the law firm Munn works for, told Mashable the Baltimore PD are setting incredibly high bail for those arrested. Some are set as high as $750,000.
The woman was on Pennsylvania Ave. recording looters near a clothing store when she was arrested along with 14 other people.
According to Mashable, about 235 people were arrested since the riots on Monday. Although Maryland law states that arrestees are to receive a court hearing within 24 hours of their arrest, most of them did not.
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan issued an executive order suspending habeas corpus, which requires those arrested without warrants be charged or released within 24 hours.
The ruling allowed police to detain people up to 48 hours without charging them.
Hogan said decision to suspend habeas corpus was “necessary to protect the public safety,” but he still drew strong criticism.
Acccording to the Guardian, Natalie Finegar, the deputy district public defender in Baltimore City, said the attorney general’s office decided to release about 100 arrestees because 82 habeas corpus petitions were filed by various public defenders.
They were all advised to return home and adhere to the 10 p.m. curfew.
Despite so many releases, Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony Batts said they would revisit the allegations at a later time and decide whether or not to prosecute.
Top image via blvck_judah
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