Pastor held in murder of transgender woman, authorities say

A Detroit pastor was charged Monday in the murder of a transgender woman, as authorities revealed that her gender status played a role in her fatal shooting.

Albert Weathers, 46, of Sterling Heights, was charged with murder in the death of Kelly Stough, 36, who was found dead on a Detroit street Friday.

Evidence about how Stough's transgender status had a role will be presented in court, according to the Wayne County prosecutor's office said. Spokeswoman Maria Miller declined to offer further comment.

The Associated Press left a message with Weathers' lawyer seeking comment.

A GoFundMe campaign was created in memory of victim Kelly Stough, 36. 

A GoFundMe campaign was created in memory of victim Kelly Stough, 36.  (GoFundMe)

Dana Nessel, Michigan's next attorney general, said the case reflects the "excessive brutality" faced by a member of Detroit's transgender community.

Nessel is also president of Fair Michigan, a group committed to equal protection for gay, lesbian and transgender residents.

"You keep fighting, keep pushing and live your life. ... Don't let the world dictate how you should live," Jessica Williams Stough, the victim's mother, told FOX 2 Detroit. "He was always a happy kid but bullied because of his tendencies."

A GoFundMe page has been created, in Kelly's memory, to assist with funeral expenses. The campaign has raised more than $2,000 of its $4,000 goal.

Weathers was being held on $1 million bond for first-degree murder, FOX 2 reported.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.