Teen Charged With Murdering Trans Woman Who Starred In Sundance Documentary


Koko Da Doll | Getty Images

After a deadly shooting last week in southwest Atlanta that killed Rasheeda Williams, also known as Koko Da Doll, a 17-year-old has been arrested.

Atlanta police say Jemarcus Jernigen turned himself in Wednesday after warrants were issued for his arrest, local affiliate FOX5 reports.

Jernigen faces charges that include murder, aggravated assault, and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony.

Williams, a 35-year-old transgender woman, starred in the 2023 Sundance Film Festival documentary “Kokomo City,” which was executive produced by Lena Waithe.

The film nabbed two awards at the latest festival: the NEXT Audience Award and the NEXT Innovator Award for featuring “firsthand accounts of and musings on Black trans identity – an often maligned and misunderstood state of being.”

READ MORE: “Director A.V. Rockwell Wins Sundance Grand Jury Prize With ‘A Thousand And One’ Starring Teyana Taylor”

Kokomo City director D. Smith dedicated a post to Williams, stating, “[i]t’s extremely difficult to process Koko’s passing, but as a team we are more encouraged now than ever to inspire the world with her story. To show how beautiful and full of life she was. She will inspire generations to come and will never be forgotten.”

Williams’ killing is among a group of shootings that have victimized trans women in the city this year.

“While these individual incidents are unrelated, we are very aware of the epidemic-level violence black and brown transgender women face in America,” APD stated in a news release to FOX 5. “We understand the impact violence has on all our communities, and we understand some acts of violence bring about legitimate concerns of whether the incident was motivated by hate. We share in these concerns and our investigations include exploring that possibility.”

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