CLE transgender woman files federal lawsuit against CMHA after alleged attack

Posted at 7:00 PM, Sep 01, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-02 09:02:19-04

A homeless transgender woman has filed a lawsuit in federal court saying CMHA police failed to uphold her rights after she was beaten at a CMHA apartment complex back on June 20.

Attorney Gregory Sasse filed the lawsuit on behalf of Kayla Jane, who says a group of tenants at the West Boulevard Place Apartments severely beat her on the seventh floor of the complex as she was returning to her unit from Edgewater Park.

Jane told residents at the complex were harassing her for weeks because she is transgender, sparking an argument that led to a gang attack.

"Between seven to nine people attacked me, and they kicked and punched and bit me," said Jane. "They attacked me because I'm transgender, and I guess it been a plan for them to do this for a very long time from what came out of their mouths."

Jane said at first CMHA police called the attack a hate crime, but then later in the police report concluded Jane allegedly sparked the altercation and was highly intoxicated.

Jane said she was so severely beaten she had to crawl to an elevator and pull a fire alarm to get help. Jane said she had to be taken to the hospital for her injuries.

According to the police report, investigators interview several people at the scene, but charges were not filed.

Witnesses told police and it was Jane who started the argument and said Jane was the aggressor during the incident.

The lawsuit says CMHA police mishandled the case, showing discrimination against a transgender woman, and is asking for $25,000 in damages. reached out to CMHA, but so far it has not yet commented on the case.