CeCe McDonald, an aspiring fashion student living in Minneapolis, was attacked by a racist, transphobic mob while walking to the grocery store in July of 2010. One of her attackers, intoxicated and adorned with a swastika tattoo, died days following the incident. CeCe was charged with two murders and was threatened with up to 80 years in a cage for simply defending herself.
While imprisoned, she discovered that her story was not unique, but that she was among many Black people—particularly Black, trans women—railroaded to prison. The stories of Assata Shakur, Angela Davis, and Mumia Abu-Jamal inspired her to fight not only for her own freedom but for all the trans women who have been slain or made victims of the criminal injustice system. Since her release in January of 2014, CeCe has become a leading and outspoken activist, inspiring many to take action against mass incarceration and for racial justice and trans liberation.