Incident report confirms shooting incident
NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Police yesterday refuted claims of targeted gun violence against members of the LGBTQ+ community following local response to a Bahamian drag queen who sought asylum in Canada.
Jermaine Aranha, who transforms into Anastarzia Anaquay on Canada’s Drag Race, opened up about getting started in drag at home in The Bahamas.
In the aired clip, Anaquay tells the other contestants that she also had many friends murdered and shot in the face because of their sexual orientation.
The comments were met with vitriol from some Bahamians, who believed the story was false, and painted the country in a negative light.
Anaquay has also allegedly received death threats.
Police Press Liason Assistant Superintendent Audley Peters said: “In terms of him being shot, that may be factual, but in terms of what he said with respect to persons being shot because of their orientation, there is no fact to that in the Commonwealth of The Bahamas.”
On July 5, 2013, police reported that a search was on for two men wanted for questioning in connection with the shooting of a 31-year-old man the night before.
The incident reportedly occurred around 11.14pm at Laird Street of Baillou Hill Road. The report did not indicate the motive for the shooting.
On the show, Anaquay recalled being shot that night, telling the other contestants that men approached her car and just started shooting as she pulled into her home driveway after work.
She said she sustained gunshot wounds in her arm, chest, and stomach and had to drive herself to the hospital.
After having to learn how to breathe and walk again, she said she claimed asylum in Canada.
Despite comments from detractors, many came to the defense of Aranha and shared similar experiences of attacks against them in The Bahamas.
Bahamian Troy Brown, whose name has been changed, noted that Aranha’s story hit home for him.
He recalled being dragged through the road in front of family and friends by a group of men who assumed a “gay party” was happening, and another incident when unknown men threatened him with two guns.
“I’ve never really gotten over it and to this day I still get paranoid seeing cars pass in front of my home saying to myself ‘I guess I’m going to die today’,” Brown posted on Facebook.
“I’m glad to see that you’re comfortable in Canada and living out your fantasy. I too one day wish to be comfortable with my lifestyle.”