LABELLE — On the one year anniversary of the yet unsolved murder, Bee Love Slater’s mother, siblings, and best friend attended a press conference held at the Hendry County Sheriff’s Office on Friday, Sept. 4, as well as Sheriff Steve Whidden and members of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
Slater, who is from Pahokee, was found by Hendry County Deputies when they responded to a call regarding a vehicle fire near 13th Street and Virginia Avenue in the Clewiston area of Harlem during the early morning hours of Sept. 4, 2019. Details surrounding the death, other than having discovered her inside the burning vehicle, have not yet been released.
Lemetris Jackson, identified as the best friend of Bee Love, said the past year had been chaotic. He explained, “She isn’t the only transgendered person to have been murdered, and with each passing murder, it reopens old wounds and makes us relive all the trauma again and again.” He spoke about the discrimination and hate that is directed towards Black people in the LGBTQ+ community, and especially transgendered individuals. “We just want answers,” he said.
When asked what kind of person Slater was, Jackson responded by saying, “Human. She was human. The kindest human I knew. Everyone who knew her loved her.”
Sheriff Whidden reported the HCSO has continued to investigate this murder, while following up on all leads, including conducting hundreds of interviews. HCSO major Crimes Unit also reached out to the FBI for assistance with their investigation due to the appearance that this may have been a hate crime.
During the press conference, Sheriff Whidden and Davis Christy, of the FBI Fort Myers Field Office, announced they will each be offering a $5,000 reward for any information leading to the identification, arrest, and indictment of the individual(s) responsible for Slater’s murder.
Slater’s family, the HCSO, and the FBI all urged anyone, with any information regarding this homicide, to come forward. The Hendry County Sheriff’s Officer Major Crimes Unit can be contact by calling 863-674- 5600.