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Man who beat Muhlaysia Booker jailed on charge of killing woman outside east Oak Cliff restaurant

This story, originally published in The Dallas Morning News, is reprinted as part of a collaborative partnership between The Dallas Morning News and Texas Metro News. The partnership seeks to boost coverage of Dallas’ communities of color, particularly in southern Dallas.

Edward Dominic Thomas, 31, faces a murder charge in the slaying of LaShanda Wilson. In 2019, he was convicted of assaulting Booker, a transgender woman.
Dallas police
File photo.(Metro Video)

By Tom Steele

The man found guilty of beating Muhlaysia Booker in 2019 now stands accused of fatally shooting a woman in east Oak Cliff this month.

Edward Dominic Thomas, 31, was booked into the Dallas County jail Tuesday afternoon on a murder charge in the slaying of LaShanda Wilson. He does not have an attorney listed in court records.

Dallas police were called early Sept. 20 about a shooting at the drive-through of a Williams Chicken in the 2800 block of East Ledbetter Drive.

Responding officers found Wilson, 41, dead in the parking lot behind the eatery, with a single gunshot wound to her upper chest. A second woman was wounded in the incident.

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According to an arrest warrant affidavit, security video showed Wilson trying to intervene as her friend was being attacked by two women.

Wilson’s friend told detectives that she saw Thomas arrive with the two other women and that he told them to assault her when she tried to break up an apparent altercation among them. The video shows Thomas handing one of the women a stun gun, which she uses on Wilson’s friend, according to the affidavit.

Wilson pulled out a handgun and possibly fired two shots after hearing her friend scream for help, the affidavit says. Thomas then grabbed a gun from a white Kia and shot Wilson, according to the affidavit.

Thomas and the two women left in the Kia and drove to Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas because one of the women had been wounded, according to the affidavit.

As police investigated, they received several anonymous tips that identified Thomas as the gunman, the affidavit says.

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Detectives spoke to Thomas last week; he denied shooting Wilson or having a gun but admitted handing a stun gun to one of the women, the affidavit says. Thomas was released following the interview but arrested after a witness identified him in a photo lineup as the shooter.

Thomas remained in custody Thursday, with bail set at $500,000.

In October 2019, Thomas was convicted of a misdemeanor count of assault in connection with the beating of Muhlaysia Booker at an east Oak Cliff apartment complex that April. An arrest warrant affidavit said he was offered $200 to assault Booker, a transgender woman, after a fender bender; video of the incident went viral.

Thomas had been charged with aggravated assault, a felony, but a jury found him guilty of the lesser charge and sentenced him to 300 days in jail, including time served.

Booker, 22, was found shot to death the month after the beating. The man accused of killing her, Kendrell Lavar Lyles, is still awaiting trial in her slaying as well as two unrelated murder cases in Collin County.

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Thomas was arrested this April on a charge of unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon after Dallas police reported finding a handgun under the driver’s seat of his car, court records show. He was released on $10,000 bond, and that case is pending.

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