INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Family members of a woman shot in a nightclub parking lot over the weekend say she’s on life support, and it’s hitting the city’s transgender community in a hard way.
But, the crime also shines a light on how violence can impact the innocent.
Family members say the victim is Ke’Yahonna Stone. They say she was out at a northeast-side nightclub in the Castle Run Shopping Center for a night of fun when she tried to intervene in some kind of fight. That’s when someone started shooting, and she got hit.
This holiday season is a season for mourning. On Christmas Day, Latroya Rucker says she spent the day with Stone, her sister.
Hours later, Rucker’s world changed.
“I feel whoever did it, they moved off of impulse. Some things you got to walk away from. It don’t make you a punk or nothing to walk away,” Rucker said.
Around 3:00 a.m. Sunday, police responded to Epic Ultra Lounge parking lot. They wrapped up around 5:30 a.m. Friends say that’s where shots rang out, leaving bullet casings littered on the ground. One bullet hit 32-year-old Stone in the head.
“She was breaking up a fight, trying to defuse a fight that was going on. My sister didn’t have nothing to do with nothing that was going on out there.”
Police on Monday were investigating the incident. The circumstances leading up to the shooting, friends say, aren’t clear, only that Stone tried to intervene.
“I’m not her immediate family, but that was my sister, that was my girl,” said one of her friends, Leslie Tidwell.
Friends say part of Stone’s role in the trans community included providing safe spaces inside her home. Efforts to extend her reach in the trans community was only growing.
Marissa Miller said of her friend, Stone, “She didn’t want to be that person who was in the streets no more that everybody was talking about. She didn’t want to do that no more. She was changing her life.”
Miller is the founder of Trans Solutions Research & Resource Center. Stone had recently been hired to work there. The plan was to take her idea of creating safe spaces and expand that to include spaces for the entire LGBTQ community.
“But, the community is hurting. Ke’Yahonna was loved by the community,” Miller said, “And the community is hurting. Some in the community were standing right there. It wasn’t they got the call they were the call.”
The Marion County Coroner’s Office identified the victim’s legal name as Calvin Jones, 32, but acknowledged in an email to the news media, “The mother would like for her to be acknowledged as Ke-Yohnna Renee Stone.” The office by Thursday had yet to announce the manner and cause of death.