Hate crime or stray bullet? Kansas City man’s death stirs fears in LGBTQ communities

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05/03/2020

Ta’Ron Carson knew how to apply makeup, so his expertly contoured jawline and highlighted cheekbones stood out as he twirled along the sidewalk on Main Street in Midtown Kansas City on a Saturday night. As usual, he was surrounded by friends. They had spent the night dancing to electronic music at Aura, a nightclub near East 39th and Main, and left when it closed about 3 a.m. on March 4, 2018. Outside the club, Carson hugged his friend Brittany Bronson. They had known each other for at least six years, but she was always meeting more of his friends. They said goodbye. Then Carson was shot and killed. He was 24. The crime baffled family and friends — there seemed no reason why someone would murder him on the street like that and drive away. Bronson and others who knew Carson feared he was shot because he was gay, and hoped police would investigate it as a hate crime.

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