The Brianna Ghey tragedy


Public Domain

Graphic design created by Aynsleigh Penland using Canva’s Presentation software

Less than a week before Valentine’s Day, trans teenager Brianna Ghey was found stabbed to death in Linear park in the village of Culcheth, England. Before her death, Ghey was known for helping younger trans girls safely access hormone replacement and therapies through the use of social media, most notably TikTok. Even though Ghey was growing a supportive and loving community, she was no stranger to bullying and harassment. The 16-year-old had been brutally beaten by students at her own school on multiple occasions before she was murdered.

Two 15-year-olds, one girl and one boy, were charged with Ghey’s murder just four days after her body was found. The teens were refused bail by John McGarva, who addressed the hearing. The teens were not able to be named because of their ages, but they will return to court on May 2 for a plea hearing, and again on July 10 for their trial.  

While the murder was likely motivated by a transphobic hate crime, the local police could not classify the case as such because of a lack of evidence. According to The Trans Safety Network, several UK media outlets received heavy criticism for disrespecting Ghey’s identity. Both BBC and Sky News failed to mention that Ghey was transgender, along with The Times including Brianna’s deadname and refusing to refer to her as a girl.

Ghey’s parents, who were very supportive of their daughter, described her as being “beautiful, witty, and hilarious,” all qualities that she regularly showed on her social media platforms. These accounts are still available online but are now labeled as “Remembering.”

Fans and supporters of Ghey were extremely distraught after her passing and showed their admiration and respect for their role model, by attending candlelit vigils in both the UK and Ireland. 

“She brought a lot of laughter to those who knew her. She was looking forward to taking her exams this year and beginning her journey into the adult world,” said Ghey’s parents. Now this journey will never be able to begin.