Transgender Drag Queen Who Inspired Bill To Make Name Changes Easier For Trans Felons in Colorado Has Lengthy Criminal Record

Sarah Fields

A transgender drag performer who holds the namesake for a newly-introduced Colorado bill that will make it easier for trans felons to change their legal names. Tiara Latrice Kelley, also known as Duane Antonio Kelley, has a record in the state of Florida for multiple crimes including prostitution and lewdness.

First introduced on January 10 by Representative Lorena Garcia, House Bill 24-1071, also known as Tiara’s Law, seeks to amend the current process for legal name changes in the state, primarily concerning transgender individuals.

According to the bill’s description, existing law specifies the that a person with a criminal record must show “good cause” to have their legal name changed, but that “gender identity” is not currently considered a valid reason. The bill seeks to amend existing policy in order to include “gender identity” under the “good cause” allowance for felons.

On X (formerly Twitter), Garcia boasted about the intention of the legislation, writing: “Trans people with felonies should be able to access the right to change their name to match their gender.”

But immediately, many raised concerns about the individual the bill was was being introduced on behalf of.

Tiara Latrice Kelley, also known as Tiara Latrice Powell, Tiara Latrice Wells, and Duane Antonio Kelley, has a lengthy criminal record in the state of Florida.

A criminal record review obtained by The Publica shows Kelley has been convicted of driving without a valid license, criminal trespassing, forgery, possession of controlled substances, and several instances of prostitution and lewdness. Kelley has also been held in contempt of court at least once.

In total, Kelley has committed 24 criminal and traffic offenses since 1999, with his most recent being in 2019.

Since moving to Colorado, Kelley has started a drag production company and has organized shows featuring children. Some have been hosted at the Pikes Peak Metropolitan Community Church, Vista Grande United Church of Christ, and La Burla Bee Burlesque House in Colorado Springs.

On January 21st, 2024, Kelley co-hosted an all-ages drag show in Colorado Springs. The show was held at the La Burla Bee Burlesque House and Italian Restaurant. According to reports from Christina Goeke, a women’s rights activist, three children were seen performing drag at the show with a drag queen known as Connie Lingus.

Bunny Bee, the owner of the Burlesque House, was also present at the event and was seen dancing almost naked in front of children.

In addition to this latest legislation seeking to expand the rights of trans felons, Colorado has become known as a “sanctuary state” for “gender affirming” care and a “refuge for trans kids” as no laws exist to prohibit the medical transitioning of minors.

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