'You look like a female!': Transgender teen harassed after stopping couple heckling Black Lives Matter bake sale

ByDion Lim KGO logo
Tuesday, June 23, 2020
Transgender teen verbally assaulted by couple in Marin Co.
June is pride month, a time to celebrate inclusiveness of the LGBTQ community. But verbal assault toward a transgender teen in Marin County caught on camera is shedding light on discrimination in our own backyards.

FAIRFAX, Calif. -- A transgender teen was mocked and harassed when he stepped in to intervene when he saw a couple heckling volunteers at a Black Lives Matter bake sale.

Jasper Lauter, 17, said he was placing rainbow colored flags Saturday in a grassy area to celebrate Pride Month. That's when he saw a man and a woman giving bake sale volunteers a hard time.

"They're mocking me and they're laughing at me and degrading me, which is obviously incredibly traumatic." Lauter said days after the incident.

Lauter said he confronted the man and woman in an effort to diffuse whatever was happening between them and the bake sale. However, the couple greeted him with aggression.

"You look like a female! There's only two, male and female, that's it!" cries one woman who inches closer to Lauter in the video. The man is also heard making inappropriate comments.

"They kept calling me lady and sweetheart even though I said 'look I'm a man' - she continued to laugh and point at my crotch and laugh at me," Lauter said.

The teen said the woman didn't just laugh, but she also pointed at his crotch and asked him what genitals he has.

The incident, which was recorded by a friend, soon went viral online.

Fairfax Police Department stepped in quickly and identified the couple in the video who are not from the area. The incident, which is being categorized as a verbal assault, is is now under investigation. After questioning the pair, authorities will determine if what they did was a hate crime or another act that requires prosecution.

Lieutenant Rico Tabaranza said this type of hate does not belong in his community.

"When we see this it upsets our community specifically because the police department and community we all get along!" he said.

As Lauter reflects back on his childhood playing in this very park, he says despite the Bay Area's diversity, this type of behavior happens far too often.

"The most important thing is we need to realize that and ask ourselves what can we do to be better. I need somebody to stand up. If you don't stand up when that's happening it's just going to continue," he said.