Imaje Devera found on street near gay and lesbian bar Updated: 4/14 4:24 p.m.
Originally published: April 14, 2009, 11:26 a.m.
Updated: April 14, 2009, 4:24 p.m.
Imaje Devera was found dead near the gay and lesbian Club Emages in Fayetteville on April 14
FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. — Police confirmed on Tuesday afternoon the identity of a homicide victim found near a local gay and lesbian bar.
According to the Fayetteville Police Department, officers found transgender drag performer Imaje Devera (born Jimmy Ali McCollough), 34, shortly after midnight on April 14 in front of 119 Joseph St. The body was found near Club Emages, formerly Club Spektrum.
Police are not releasing any more information at the time, including how the victim died, citing the sensitive nature of the case.
Club Emages owner Dy’Mond Cartier told Raleigh news station WRAL that police said Devera had been stabbed and that the case was being investigated as a hate crime.
The club was not open on Monday evening, so it is not immediately clear why Devera was in the area. However, sources have told Q-Notes that Devera was involved in prostitution as a way to support herself. In many instances, transgender individuals are forced to engage in prostitution as a livelihood, due to high rates of anti-gay and anti-transgender employment discrimination.
The Joseph St. and Bragg Blvd. areas are known to have a high crime rate. Since the end of March, the Joseph St. area has witnessed an arrest for prostitution, an armed robbery and an aggravated assault wherein the victim was shot.
The identification of the victim was accompanied by a photograph taken after a prior arrest. No details regarding a prior arrest were immediately available.
Anyone with information regarding this investigation is encouraged to contact the Fayetteville Police Department Homicide Investigation Unit at 910-433-1856 or call Crime Stoppers at 910-483-TIPS (910-483-8477).