…while the white assailants walk.

Keywords: free cece, cece mcdonald, minnesota


Today I bring you the sad and conflicting story of Cece McDonald – a transgender woman who was arrested last year….


McDonald, who is (black) in transition from a man to a woman, was charged last year with second-degree intentional murder in the death of Dean Schmitz, 47 (who is white). McDonald, 23, was walking with a group of friends past the Schooner Tavern about 12:30 a.m. June 5 when words were exchanged between the group and Schmitz and other bar patrons who were outside smoking. A fight ensued, and a woman allegedly threw a glass and cut McDonald’s face. Schmitz died at the scene from a stab wound to the chest. In a videotaped interview with police after the fight, McDonald allegedly admitted that she took out a pair of scissors to scare Schmitz, and that Schmitz ran into them during the fight.

McDonald has said the stabbing was accidental and that she was acting in self-defense after the melee was prompted by the victim’s gay-bashing and racist remarks.


In June of last year, Cece was trying to leave the scene and when the attackers chased her – she pulled out a scissor and Dean Schmitz ended up getting stabbed in the chest. Since then, a may-lay of public and legal transphobia has been running rampant throughout Minnesota – and she has recently been sentenced – causing even more of a fire storm. Why? Because she was convicted. Keep reading…


McDonald was arrested, and according to TransGriot, was “denied medical treatment for her injuries, was interrogated for hours, placed in solitary confinement on top of that and forced to sign a confession that she later recanted.” Molly Flaherty wasn’t arrested until May 11. Flaherty is charged with “second degree assault with a deadly weapon and third degree assault causing substantial bodily harm;” McDonald was charged with first-degree manslaughter. (Autostraddle)


Now Cece is being held in prison as a male – something she is not. It’s not right. There are so many things wrong and saddening about this situation – how we fail Americans of color, who are gay, transgender or ‘other’. There are people speaking out about Cece’s plight – including Leslie Feinberg – a famous transgender activists who was arrested earlier this month for spray painting “Free Cece” on the prison where she is being held. (That photo up top is Cece and Leslie.)

McDonald was sentenced June 4 in Hennepin County District Court after agreeing to plead guilty to second-degree manslaughter in the death of Dean Schmitz, 47. Since then McDonald has been housed as a man at the St. Cloud prison. You can go to supportcece.wordpress.com to support the movemebt, and you can sign the change.org petition here asking the state to drop the charges - it has already been signed by over 18,000 people.


Sad world we live in sometimes y’all. That’s about all I want to say here.