Police have dropped their investigation into a transgender woman’s complaint that she was barred from female toilet
POLICE have dropped their investigation into a transgender woman’s complaint she was barred from female toilets.
River Song was outraged when a shopping centre security guard banned her from the women’s loos, telling colleagues: “It’s got a penis.”
Police Scotland opened an investigation into a hate crime but have now revealed the case has been dropped.
Officers have advised staff at the St James Centre, Edinburgh, on “diversity issues” but equal rights groups said the they were “disappointed” the hate crime probe had been dropped.
River, 18, from Edinburgh, is awaiting surgery to complete her switch from male to female.
Last week she used the female toilets at the shopping centre and was confronted by a guard who told her: “You’re a man and always will be.”
A spokesman for Police Scotland said: “We won’t be pursuing criminal charges against the individual involved.
“But we continue to work with the centre using our diversity officers to advise them on training relating to diversity issues.”
River said: “I’m just so disappointed that the police don’t seem to be treating this as a real crime.
“What I went through was an absolutely horrifying experience and I’m actually too scared to to use the toilets there now, I just don’t feel safe.
She added: “It’s so disappointing that no one seems to be taking this seriously as it is a crime at the end of the day and one that the transgender community face on a daily basis.
“What happened to me could now happen again to someone else and I will be going to my lawyers to see if I can take this to court.”
Stacy Novak, of transgender advice group Transliving International, said: “It’s so disappointing that they’re not doing anything about it and I would really question the shopping centre and their training of their security staff.
“So often people don’t report these crimes because they don’t know who the person was but this case is different. This young woman knew who the person was and reported it and it seems that nothing is being done.”
A spokeswoman for the St James centre said it was “carrying out a thorough investigation into the incident which is ongoing”.
She added: “We have discussed the incident with the police who have dropped the investigation on the grounds of insufficient evidence.”
Asked if the guard had been disciplined, the spokeswoman said that individual cases are not discussed with third parties.
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