Murders of three trans people in two weeks spark protests in Mexico

LGBTQ+ activists took to the streets in Mexico City to protest the murders and escalation of violence against trans people.

This article is about the murders of three trans people in Mexico. In the photo, people at a protest in Mexico, waving a trans flag.
Image: Via X - @FueraCloset_AC

Content warning: contains descriptions of violence, murder and transphobia.

Authorities in Mexico disclosed that at least three trans people were murdered in the first two weeks of 2024, spurring LGBTQ+ and human rights to protest against the escalation of violence. Two additional similar cases are also being investigated.

Last week, Mexican trans activist Miriam Nohemí Ríos was shot dead while working in her business in the central Mexican state of Michoacán. Then, on Saturday, January 13, the body of a trans person was similarly found with gunshot wounds in the central state of Jalisco.

On Sunday, January 14, authorities confirmed that trans activist and politician Samantha Gómez Fonseca had also been shot multiple times and found inside a car in Mexico City.

Further murders of two other trans people have not yet been confirmed by authorities but were registered by human rights groups in Mexico. These involved a trans woman known as “Ivonne”, who was found dead with her partner in the southern state of Veracruz according to the National Observatory of Hate Crimes Against LGBTI people; and transgender stylist Gaby Ortíz, who was killed in the Hidalgo state, as reported by association Letra S.


The murders sparked protests among the trans and wider LGBTQ+ community in Mexico, who took to the streets in Mexico City on Monday, January 15. Over 100 people marched on the main throughway, chanting: “Samantha listen, we’re fighting for you”.

As previously mentioned, activist Samantha Gómez Fonseca was one of the victims, and she had originally planned to take part in the march to demand greater acceptance of trans people in Mexico. After her death, the march turned into a protest and a call for justice.

Earlier in the same day, another group of activists spray painted the words “trans lives matter” on a wall of the National Palace of Mexico to protest the rising number of murders. According to Letra S, 513 LGBTQ+ people were violently killed over the past six years in Mexico.


Some of the protesters claimed that the escalation of violence in the last two weeks may have been incited by recent transphobic comments made by Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador. The President described a trans congresswoman as a “man dressed as a woman” and later apologised for the comment.

As reported by ABC News, one of the marchers in Mexico described López Obrador’s apology as “too little too late”. They added, “These comments by the president have created transphobia and resulted in hate crimes against the trans community.”

Paulina Carrazco, a 41-year-old trans woman who was present at the march, said that it felt like “the violence was knocking on our front door”.

“We are scared, but with that fear we’re going to keep fighting,” Carrazco said. “We’re going to do everything in our power so the next generations won’t have to live in fear.”

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