Justice for Justis: Hundreds gather to honor New Smyrna Beach teen

Friend: 'We want to find who did this to her and we want to serve her justice'

NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. – Hundreds of friends and family gathered Saturday to honor 16-year-old Justis Garrett, whose body was found off Gasline Road in DeLand on April 18.

People shared stories and memories at a vigil at Riverside Park in New Smyrna Beach, where Justis had lived up until recently.

"Justis was very energetic and very well-known to many people," friend Liahla Edwards said. "Even when she was at her worst moment, she was always smiling."

Justis was last seen in Lake County on April 13 after she was dropped off at school. She had just moved to Mount Dora from New Smyrna Beach several months ago. 

Five days passed before her body ​was found by a group of runners off Gasline Road. Investigators with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement have not released how exactly Justis died. ​

"We want to find who did this to her and we want to serve her justice," said friend Daisy Higbie. 

"She doesn't deserve to go down without anybody knowing what happened to her," friend Jaedin Pittman said. "She deserves to have that clarification that everyone will know who did this to her and they will be put away forever." 

The FDLE is still investigating, and if you have any information about what led to Justis's death, you're asked to call Crimeline at 800-423-TIPS. 

About the Author:

It has been an absolute pleasure for Clay LePard living and working in Orlando since he joined News 6 in July 2017. Previously, Clay worked at WNEP TV in Scranton, Pennsylvania, where he brought viewers along to witness everything from unprecedented access to the Tobyhanna Army Depot to an interview with convicted double-murderer Hugo Selenski.