Detroit man charged with murder in shooting death of transgender woman

‘We hope to bring justice to the victims and their families’

Deontae Close (Wayne County Prosecutor's Office)

DETROIT – A 31-year-old man is facing murder charges in the fatal shooting of a 33-year-old transgender woman from Ohio.

Deontae Antoine Close, 31, of Detroit is facing a second-degree murder charge and a felony firearm charge in the murder of Dede Ricks.

DeDe Ricks (Photo provided by friend)

Detroit police were called at 3:39 a.m. on Aug. 27 to a home in the 2530 block of Manistique Street on reports of a shooting. When officers arrived they found the woman unresponsive with a gunshot wound to her right back and left chest. Medics pronounced her dead when they arrived.

The Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office said that Close fired a handgun, shooting and killing Dede. Close was arrested later that same day.

“This is beyond concerning that this is the second trans murder in less than two weeks. The cases do not appear to be related. However, we have seen this happen before and hope that this does not become a pattern. While some protections for transgender citizens in Michigan are finally beginning to be recognized, their lives are still very much in danger,” Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy said.

Close was arraigned on Aug. 30 in the 36th District Court, and given a $500,000/10% bond. If he is released, he will receive a GPS tether and will not be allowed to possess weapons.

A probable cause conference is scheduled for Sept. 13 at 8:30 a.m. and the preliminary examination is scheduled for Sept. 20 at 1:45 p.m.

“The fact that we have seen two homicides of transgender women in just three weeks shows the danger this community faces. Rather than being supported, we often hear people vilify the transgender community which fuels this kind of violence and hate. We are proud to work with Prosecutor Worthy’s office on these cases, and we hope to bring justice to the victims and their families,” Fair Michigan President Alanna Maguire said.

Read: Hear from trans women of color who are working to help others in Metro Detroit

About the Author:

Kayla is a Web Producer for ClickOnDetroit. Before she joined the team in 2018 she worked at WILX in Lansing as a digital producer.