Following yesterday's announcement of a hung jury in the Bridges McRae case, the Memphis Gay & Lesbian Community Center's "Raise Your Voice" group is holding a vigil to honor McRae's transgender victim Duanna Johnson. The vigil begins at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday on the Federal Plaza downtown.
In February 2008, Johnson was beaten over the head with handcuffs by former Memphis Police officer McRae in the lobby of the Shelby County Jail. Johnson, who had been arrested on prostitution charges, said the violence began after she refused to answer to "he/she" and "faggot."
The 18-minute beating was caught on surveillance tape, but despite the visual evidence, a jury in the case was unable to reach a verdict yesterday. The judge has invoked the Allen Charge, which urges the jury to reconsider.
Johnson didn't live to see her own trial. She was found shot to death on a North Memphis street in November 2008.