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Suspect named in slaying of transgender woman in Fontana

Fontana police Thursday night identified a suspect in the slaying of a transgender woman, a former YouTube reality show star, who was apparently beaten to death in her apartment.

Domonique Newburn, 31, was found dead in her apartment Tuesday afternoon after residents called police reporting a disturbance, police said.

Police were searching for Dantjier Powell, 18, a San Bernardino resident who may be trying to leave the state on a bus, Fontana Police Sgt. Doug Imhof said.

Powell was believed to be with a 25-year-old Highland woman named Jamie Nicole Cotton. 

Police described Powell as an African American with an average build who is about 5 feet, 8 inches tall and weighs about 150 pounds.

Newburn had her name changed from Daymond Watford in June 2010, according to San Bernardino County records. A month later, she appeared under her stage name Domonique Duffy in the premiere episode of “Hollywood Houseboys,” a reality show focusing on a group of young, black gay men trying to make the big time in Los Angeles

The show’s producer, Ryan Hope, issued a statement to reporters:

"We are all deeply shocked and saddened by the tragic loss of our sister, Domonique Newburn. Domonique was an amazing person whose spirit transcended gender. When we set out to document or lives for reality television, we never once wished to make headlines like this. Our thoughts, prayers and condolences are with her family."

Authorities said Newburn suffered trauma injuries and may have tried to escape her attacker. 

Anyone with information should call Fontana police at (909) 356-8477. Anyone who thinks they may have spotted Powell outside Fontana should call 911, Imhoff said.


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