Home  Legal

*The brutal beating and murder of gay student Matthew Shephard made national headlines around the world. This case is just as horrific and gruesome but has received little to no media attention with the exception of ‘America’s Most Wanted.’ Why isn’t law enforcement warning the gay community that there may be a brutal serial killer among their midst who is targeting gay men via the internet and through telephone chat lines?

               Rashawn Brazell



Rashawn Brazell, 19, (pictured above) was gay; he was also an aspiring web designer and fashion model.  He worked four jobs and lived at home with his mother.   Whenever he left the house, he was always dressed in a sports coat and slacks.  He was well liked by his neighbors and friends.  He also took his mother out to lunch at least once a week and they rented movies.

On February 14th, 2005 (Valentine’s Day), Rashawn was going to go file his taxes.   At 7:30 that morning, an unknown person rang the apartment building's security buzzer and Rashawn went down to meet them.  According to witnesses, Rashawn met a man outside his Brooklyn, New York apartment and the two men entered the subway together at the Gates Avenue J Line.  What stood out as strange, the man wore a hooded type of jacket, as if he was disguising his appearance.  Witnesses believe the two exited at the Nostrand Avenue A Line in Bedford Stuyvesant a short time later.  Rashawn was never seen alive again.

Rashawn was reported missing that day.  Three days later, a bag of body parts were found in a Brooklyn subway. One of the severed hands was fingerprinted and Rashawn was identified as the victim.  Two days later, a second bag containing a hacked-off torso was discovered in a Brooklyn industrial zone.  DNA confirmed that the torso belonged to Rashawn Brazell.

The Medical Examiner believes that Rashawn was kept alive for two days before being killed.  He may have been tortured.

The killer carefully traced the body with a sharp instrument before cutting it apart with an electric chain saw. Every cut was clean and on joint, indicating the killer had knowledge of human anatomy.

After interviewing Rashawn’s friends, the police learned that Rashawn had made arrangements to meet a man and the two men were planning to go away for a few days.

Police theorize that Rashawn may have met his killer on a telephone chat line or on the Internet.  They ruled out the Internet after they realized that Rashawn’s computer was broken.  A detective said, “If he met the guy, this guy is important.”

The victim’s mother told the New York Times, she was unaware that her son had a boyfriend and that he in fact had girlfriends.  As for a motive why someone would murder he son, she said, “The only thing I can think of is hate and jealousy,” adding, “He has been envied.”

A profiler believes the killer comes from an extremely violent background and has killed before.

Rashawn’s head has never been found; there is speculation that the killer kept his head as a trophy.


 Maria and daughter

*Again, we have another brutal and gruesome crime that involves an mother and daughter.  This case received little to no media attention as well.  These murders were extremely horrific and senseless.

Maria Esperanza Hernandez and her daughter Maria del Carmen Hernandez lived in Fremont, Calif.; an east bay suburb outside of San Francisco.

Both women were hardworking and friendly.  They occupied a modest home and mostly kept to themselves.

Maria Esperanza Hernandez (the mother) worked at the laundry room of the Fremont Care Center.

On February 1st, Maria missed her ride to work.  At 2:30 a.m. in the morning, her 19-year old daughter, decided to accompany her on the long walk to work for safety reasons.

Both women were unable to obtain a driver’s license due to their undocumented status.

Maria’s daughter stayed on the cell phone with a relative while she walked her mother to work.

After several minutes, in a frantic voice, she told the relative that she heard footsteps; someone was following them.

The relative then heard screaming and the line went dead.

At approximately 5 a.m. in the morning, residents were awaken by the blood curling screams from the mother and daughter who were being clubbed to death in the middle of the street by an unknown assailant.

One resident was able to come out of his home in time to observe a white youth in his twenties standing over the dead bodies.

The resident shouted, ‘What are you doing?’ The youth dropped the club and ran.

The witness also observed a car with three men inside.

The car sped away, turning its lights off.

Next to the two bodies, the murderer left a bloody wooden club he used to bludgeon the mother and daughter to death.

The police are calling this case a possible “hate crime,” because prior complaints indicate that white youths were harassing Mexican immigrants on a daily basis.

Was this the work of anti-Mexican vigilantes?

Or was this some type of gang initiation?

This case remains unsolved.

"Gay City News" and "Aztlan Communications Network."






return to top