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Suspect in Transgender Woman's Death Already in Jail

Police believe Kendrell Lavar Lyles killed Muhlaysia Booker in Dallas
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 13, 2019 8:05 AM CDT
In this Friday, April 20, 2019 photo, Muhlaysia Booker speaks during a rally in Dallas. Booker, a transgender woman seen on a widely circulated video being beaten on April 12 in front of a crowd of people,...   (Ryan Michalesko/The Dallas Morning News via AP)
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(Newser) – Police in Dallas have a suspect in custody in the murder of Muhlaysia Booker—and they believe he is responsible for at least two more murders. Police say Kendrell Lavar Lyles, 33, was already in custody for two apparently unrelated killings when he was arrested in the May 18 slaying of Booker, a 22-year-old transgender woman, the Dallas Morning News reports. Lyles was arrested last Wednesday in connection with the May 22 shooting death of a woman and was then linked to the drug-related killing of a man on May 23, reports the New York Times. "During the investigation of two other homicides, detectives realized Lyles drove the same type of car that is believed to have picked up Muhlaysia Booker on May 18, 2019," police Maj. Max Geron said Wednesday, per CBS Dallas/Fort Worth.

"We don't know the motive for murder at this point," Geron added. Police say Lyles frequented the area where Booker was last seen and cellphone analysis placed him at the location where she was killed, reports the Washington Post. Booker was killed just weeks after she was the victim of an apparently unrelated assault that followed a minor traffic accident. (Police say Lyles is also a "person of interest" in the murder of transgender woman Chynal Lindsey, whose body was found June 1.)

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