Case Studies

Alejandra: Police abuse during Pico y Género


On April 13 2020, less than 24 hours after the implementation of the gender-policy Pico y Genéro in the city of Bogotá, Alejandra Parra, a trans women went out shopping in the area of Paloquemao. It was an odd day, that is a day where women were allowed to go out.

Alejandra, who is a member of the Red Comunitaria Trans, a community-based organization that works to defend the human rights of trans people in marginalized contexts, was attacked by the police, who initially approached her referring to her as a he, overriding her gender identity.

Her friend Edward, a gay cisgender man, came to defend her, and was physically attacked and assaulted by the police, instead of only receiving a summons to appear given that he was a man shopping on a “women’s day”. Video evidence shows how the policeman chokes Edward without giving him an explanation, despite Edward not resisting or attacking the policeman.

While he is being held, the police officer calls to request support, while Edward remains in custody and Alejandra records the situation while holding her dog. There is no evidence in the video of any situation that is posing a danger to the policeman, or a reason why he physically assaulted the man. Both Alejandra and Edward received a summons to appear in court, even though Alejandra was allowed to mobilize that day, since she is a trans woman.

This was one of the first documented cases of police violence against the trans community during the Pico y Genero in Bogotá. In this regard, the Red Comunitaria Trans said in a statement: “Claudia López’s silence (Mayor of Bogotá) makes her complicit in this violence. How many more lives? How much more violence on our bodies?”