US & Canada

Driver killed at NSA was transgender sex worker, friends say

Ricky Hall Image copyright AP
Image caption Ricky Hall was killed on Monday after she drove into a secured area near the National Security Agency

The person killed by police in a violent incident at the National Security Agency earlier this week has been identified as a transgendered sex worker, according to friends.

Ricky Hall, who goes by Mya, was shot by police on Monday when she crashed a stolen car into a police vehicle.

The vehicle belonged to a 60-year-old man who had brought Ms Hall and one other person to a nearby hotel.

A passenger in the car and a police officer were wounded in the encounter.

The 60-year-old man picked the pair up in Baltimore and drove them to a hotel near the National Security Agency (NSA) in Howard County.

Police would not say whether alcohol, drugs or sex were part of their short stay at the hotel.

Police said Ms Hall and her friend stole the man's car while he used the bathroom.

The NSA is a clandestine intelligence agency, charged with collecting and analysing electronic signals for US intelligence and counterintelligence purposes. Located on a sprawling military base, the NSA is extremely well protected.

Criminal history

Kayla Brooks, who works at a transgender outreach programme in Baltimore, was a friend of Ms Hall and said she last saw her on Sunday.

Ms Hall "seemed high and was looking for a date," while walking in an area known for being a popular spot for sex workers, Ms Brooks said.

Court documents reveal that Ms Hall had a criminal record that included assault and robbery charges.

FBI, which was handling the investigation, said there was no connection to terrorism and called it a "local criminal matter".

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