A man in Charlotte, North Carolina, has been charged with aggravated assault after attacking a transgender woman on a city bus.
On April 7, 24-year-old Jayla Ware was arguing with Roy Eugene-Lav Hedman, a friend, on a Charlotte Area Transit System (CATS) bus. Suddenly Hedman began repeatedly punching her and kicking her in the face. A bystander filmed the incident while another witness flagged down a police officer, who called an ambulance. Ware was rushed to a nearby hospital for her injuries, which included a broken jaw.
“I’m glad that a lot of people really have stepped up [and] tried to reach out to me,” she told WBTV a few days after the attack. “And I thank God, because if anything, I could have been dead.”
Ware added that Hedman was someone she’d known for “some time,” and that his sister visited her at the hospital. She also knew other people on the bus—but none of them came to her rescue.
The graphic video of her assault was shared thousands of times on Facebook, offering proof of Hedman’s brutal assault. He has reportedly been arrested more than 20 times by Charlotte police for a variety of charges, including breaking and entering, common law robbery, and three separate assaults on women.
“Watch out for who your friends are, who you think they are,” Ware advised. “Pick and choose your friends wisely.”
CATS officials urged customers to report any criminal activity to 911.