News (USA)

Officials close investigation in trans teen’s suicide, refer to her as ‘Mr. Alcorn’ in final report

A large crowd gathers for a candle light vigil to remember the life of Leelah Alcorn, a 17 year-old transgender girl who committed suicide, in Kings Mills, Ohio.
A large crowd gathers for a candle light vigil to remember the life of Leelah Alcorn, a 17 year-old transgender girl who committed suicide, in Kings Mills, Ohio. Meg Vogel, The Enquirer (AP)

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Leelah’s selfies and poignant messages hit home among many transgender people who say they’ve faced disapproving families, discrimination or violence and are hoping for more acceptance.

Her death prompted social media discussions, online petitions in support of transgender people and vigils as far away as London, and she was mentioned in a Golden Globe winner’s televised speech.

Her Tumblr post included complaints about depression and isolation and concerns that life would only get worse. She expressed frustration that her parents wanted her to be “their perfect little straight Christian boy” and said she was taken to “Christian therapists” who were “very biased.”

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Her parents expressed love and grief after the death but haven’t commented publicly much beyond that. The report says the parents told investigators they thought their child had gotten much better after dealing with depression in the summer.

The patrol investigation into Leelah’s death was done using her birth name, Joshua Alcorn, and refers to her as Joshua or Mr. Alcorn.

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