Domingo Ramirez-Cayente. (Dallas County Sheriff’s Department)
A 22-year-old man who admitted to police that he shot a trans woman multiple times has been released on bail from Dallas County Jail.
Domingo Ramirez-Cayente was bailed out on September 26, the day after he was arrested and just six days after he shot Daniela Calderon in the stomach, arm and chest.
Ramirez-Cayente, who is a Mexican citizen, was released after posting bail that was set at $25,000. Jail officials told The Dallas Morning News that he was released to the streets and not into the custody of immigration officials.
Calderon, 35, is recovering in hospital and is out of critical condition, according to members of the Latinx trans community.
“She is out of critical condition. But she is still in the state where they have to watch her closely,” said Stacey Monroe of La Organización Latina de Trans en Texas. “She’s going through a lot mentally and physically. … We can feel her pain. We sense her sadness, and it’s heartbreaking, honestly.”
Monroe added that Calderon was shot five times in the stomach and twice in the chest and arm. She only learned that her attacker had been freed on bail when contacted by the press.
“One of her biggest fears was that he was going to post bond. Now that that’s happened, we have to take steps to deal with her fear and anxiety,” Monroe said.
Calderon was shot by Ramirez-Cayente while she was walking alone on the evening of September 20, on the 11000 block on Dennis Road, a residential neighbourhood in northwest Dallas.
Ramirez-Cayente was driving a red truck when he approached Calderon and began making derogatory comments about gay and transgender people, according to the police’s arrest affidavit.
Calderon walked away from the encounter to a bus stop, but was followed by Ramirez-Cayente who parked his truck next to her and produced a handgun, shooting her multiple times. She was taken to hospital for surgery.
During a police interview on September 24, Ramirez-Cayente admitted to the shooting. He and his truck were both captured by CCTV footage during the shooting.
Texas hate-crime laws do not cover gender identity, so activists are calling for the FBI – which has been notified of the crime – to investigate, so that Ramirez-Cayente can be charged under federal hate-crime law that carries a longer sentence.