A friend of Claudia Aderotimi, the British tourist who allegedly died after receiving an illegal buttocks injection last year from an artist known as the Black Madam, marveled at news that the Black Madam was arrested last night right before she was to administer more dangerous injections at a "pumping party" in East Germantown, according to police.
"And this is all going down in Philly? Is it really that crazy there?" said Aderotimi's friend, Tee Ali, in a call today from London. "A pumping party? Damn, that is mad!"
The arrest of the Black Madam, a transgender gothic hip-hop singer whose real name is Padge Victoria Windslowe, 42, comes just more than a year since Aderotimi, 20, died after allegeldy receiving injections from Windslowe at the Hampton Inn near the airport on Feb. 7, 2011. Aderotimi was a dancer from London who aspired to be in music videos, according to Ali.
Windslowe has remained free in that case while police await autopsy results from the Delaware County Medical Examiner's Office. Delaware County Medical Examiner Fredric Hellman said last week he's awaiting toxicology results from the Food and Drug Administration.
"There's a question to the source of the silicone, whether it's medicinal or industrial, that was not answered by the initial studies at local labs," Hellman said.
Last week, I also asked Southwest Detectives Lt. John Walker whether he thought the Black Madam was out there, continuing to administer these injections.
"We would hope not," he said. "Our struggle with this, obviously, is unfortunately these rogue procedures are still going on around the country."
Still, Ali couldn't believe Windslowe was allowed to remain free and allegedly continue her illegal trade.
"She should have been arrested a long time ago. You would hope she would stop doing it now," Ali said. "But you never know, she might continue that stuff in jail."
Ali wondered aloud whether Windslowe, whom he has never met, has a "crazy obsession" with or "fetish" for injecting people.
She may have, but she also may have a crazy obsession and fetish for the media attention.
An investigator previously told me that the Black Madam may be relishing the spotlight, even if it's hot as hell. She'll get thrown in jail for a couple years, but when she gets out, even more people will know her name, he said. For someone whose music videos are as dark and twisted as the backroom injections she allegedly performs, the lines between fame and infamy may not be as distinct as they are for the rest of us.
Maybe the Black Madam was feeling safe, since it had been a year, or maybe, just maybe - and this is the scary thought - she allegedly did it because it has been a year and she's been feeling pretty cold out of the spotlight. Did you see the way she was smirking at the cameras last night as she was led away?
After my reporting on this story last year, I received emails and calls from transgender women who said that often people in the trans community are forced in to illegal trades, like these dangerous injections and prostitution, because nobody will hire them for above-the-table jobs.
It's hard to have sympathy for anybody though who will risk another's life for money, especially one who continues to do it after her actions already claimed a young woman's life. If all of the allegations are true, the Black Madam is no better than a heroin dealer. Both prey on the weaknesses of others and promise a better way through injectable substances.
What's really scary is how much the creepy music videos Black Madam makes must cost and how many alleged injections she may have had to do to fund them. Earlier this week, someone claiming to be the Black Madam's press agent sent me a link to one of her newest videos. It was posted in April 2011, just a couple months after Aderotimi's death.