Houston police arrest man accused of killing a 22-year-old transgender woman in 2020

Miya Shay Image
Friday, October 7, 2022
DNA ties man to trans woman's murder committed 2 years ago
A trans woman's mother describes how law enforcement told her that a man accused of killing her daughter two years ago.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Two years after a 22-year-old transgender woman, , was murdered, Houston police arrested a suspect on Thursday.

Jermal Richards, 32, is now charged with killing Asia Foster after he allegedly dumped her body on a side road west of the Houston Galleria area in November 2020.

"I just want him to do time," Bird Foster, Asia's mother, said. "I want to see him wake up every day behind bars. He has to see it every day, the rest of this life."

On Thursday, Asia's mother and her relatives received calls from investigators about the arrest. According to court documents, Asia Foster met up with Richards at his apartment complex near the Galleria the evening she was killed.

RELATED: Transgender woman identified as homicide victim in SW Houston

A short while later, she was found shot to death nearby Greenridge St.

Relatives wondered if Asia would be another statistic in the alarming murders of transgender women.

"A lot of transgender women are being targeted, fear for their life all the time," Cynthia G, the aunt who raised Asia, said. "Why, why? They're just humans, trying to live their life, and there's hate."

"It's absolutely an epidemic," Bird said and has always accepted Asia just the way she is. "Why? The hate you have for someone is someone else living some other way. Not your life. They just want to live their life some sort of way."

Bird Foster says she always kept up with investigators as they worked the case, but the COVID-19 pandemic delayed most of the case.

As restrictions from the pandemic were lifted, investigators were able to find and confirm a DNA match. They say Richards' DNA was found on Asia's body.

"They told me they have an absolute match, which is why he is in custody," Bird said.

SEE ALSO: Activists speak out on violence against the transgender community in Houston after woman's murder

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