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LAPD announce arrest in brutal attack on transgender woman

Victim speaks out: 'As you can see, I’m still fabulous'
Saturday, June 22, 2013
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LOS ANGELES — One of four alleged attackers in a brutal beating of a transgender woman in Hollywood last month has been arrested and is custody, according to the Los Angeles Police Department.

Nicol Shakhnazaryan, 21, was arrested on felony battery charges in the May 31 attack on Vivian Diego, a 22-year-old transgender woman.

From family video
Vivian Diego, following the May 31 attack.

Diego, who works at Beso, the Hollywood restaurant owned by actress Eva Longoria, was struck her from behind by one of four men, said Lt. Marc Reina. “The remaining members of the group then joined in brutally assaulting Vivian by repeatedly kicking her, even while she lay motionless on the sidewalk.”

The attack, which police called a possible hate crime, was caught on surveillance video.

Diego suffered a broken jaw, shattered cheekbone and two cracked ribs. Her jaw was wired shut as a result and she was hospitalized for seven days.

Despite her mouth being wired shut, Diego said she is speaking out so that people know she is proud of the person she sees in the mirror.

“I am not letting this incident, this attack stop me from living my life,” she told KCBS-TV earlier this week, prior to Shakhnazaryan’s arrest.

“As you can see, I’m still fabulous,” she said.

Watch:

Shakhnazaryan is being held on $1.05 million bail. LAPD and the FBI are searching for the remaining three suspects.

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