Angie Zapata

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Angie Zapata
Born Justin Zapata
(1989-08-05)August 5, 1989
Brighton, Colorado, U.S.A.
Died July 17, 2008(2008-07-17) (aged 18)
Greeley, Colorado, U.S.A.

Angie Zapata (5 August 1989 – 17 July 2008) was an American trans woman beaten to death in Greeley, Colorado. Her killer, Allen Andrade, was convicted of first-degree murder and committing a bias-motivated crime, because he murdered her after learning she was transgender. The case was the first in the nation to get a conviction for a hate crime involving a transgender victim.[1] Angie Zapata's story and murder were featured on Univision's November 1, 2009 Aqui y Ahora television show.


Born on August 5, 1989, in Brighton, Colorado,[2] she adopted the name "Angie" when she was 16 and began living as a woman.[1]

Murder and trial[edit]

Zapata was 18 when she met Allen Andrade (age 31 at the time) through the mobile phone social network MocoSpace.[3] According to Andrade, the two met on July 15, 2008, and spent nearly three days together, during which they had a sexual encounter. Prosecutors state that Andrade later discovered that Zapata was transgender and subsequently began beating her—first with his fists and then with a fire extinguisher—until she was dead. In the arrest affidavit, Andrade said he thought he had "killed it" before leaving in Zapata's car with the murder weapon and other incriminating evidence.[4] Andrade was arrested near his residence driving Zapata's car.[5][6]

The possibility of prosecuting the case as a hate crime was pressed by Zapata's family.[7][8][9] The actual trial began on April 16, 2009. During the trial, the jury heard jailhouse conversations in which Andrade told a girlfriend that "gay things must die."[1]

On April 22, 2009, Andrade was found guilty of first degree murder, hate crimes, aggravated motor vehicle theft, and identity theft.[10][11] He was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.[10] Because Andrade had six prior felony convictions, the judge dubbed him a "habitual criminal" at his May 8, 2009 sentencing trial for the hate crime and theft convictions.[11] This quadrupled his sentence to an additional 60 years.[11]


The 2011 novel The Butterfly and the Flame by Dana De Young was dedicated in part to Zapata's memory.[12]

Ozomatli references Zapata in their song "Gay Vatos in Love", on their 2010 album Fire Away.[13]


  1. ^ a b c Spellman, Jim (April 22, 2009). "Transgender murder, hate crime conviction a first". CNN. 
  2. ^ Asmar, Melanie (May 28, 2009). "Who was Angie Zapata? Her murderer's trial didn't tell the whole story". Westword. p. 4. Retrieved 2009-07-17. 
  3. ^ Asmar, Melanie (May 28, 2009). "Who was Angie Zapata? Her murderer's trial didn't tell the whole story". Westword. p. 1. Retrieved 2009-07-17. 
  4. ^ Whaley, Monte (July 31, 2008). "Transgender victim referred to as "it"". The Denver Post. 
  5. ^ Banda, P. Solomon (July 31, 2008). "Colorado man charged in transgender slaying". USA Today. 
  6. ^ Shoetz, David (July 31, 2008). "Transgender Teen's Murder Suspect Snapped". ABC News. 
  7. ^ Staff (July 23, 2008). "Hundreds mourn slain teen; hate crime suspected". The Denver Post. 
  8. ^ Whaley, Monte (July 24, 2008). "Kin believe transgender teen's killing a hate crime". The Denver Post. 
  9. ^ Whaley, Monte (July 25, 2008). "Transgender teen's murder possibly a hate crime". The Denver Post. 
  10. ^ a b Luning, Ernest (April 22, 2009). "Andrade sentenced to life without parole in Zapata killing". The Colorado Independent. Archived from the original on 2009-07-18. Retrieved 2009-07-18. 
  11. ^ a b c Asmar, Melanie (May 8, 2009). "In Zapata case, sixty years added to murderer's life sentence". Westword. Archived from the original on 2009-07-18. Retrieved 2009-07-18. 
  12. ^ The Butterfly and the Flame, by De Young, Dana. Published by iUniverse 4-27-2011. Read 05-30-2011
  13. ^

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