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Loved ones gather to remember, demand justice for slain transgender woman

Body of Sasha Garden found Thursday at Reserve at Lake Buchanan Apartments

ORLANDO, Fla. – Close friends of a transgender woman killed this week gathered Sunday to remember her life and demand justice for her murder.

Sasha Garden's friends told News 6 she was from Wisconsin and loved doing hair. They said her smile and personality meant so much. 

Deputies said they found Garden's body Thursday morning in the parking lot at the Reserve at Lake Buchanan Apartments.

"She was a very nice person,” said close friend Mulan Williams. “She's wonderful, a good spirit.” 

"Sasha did have a family, and she had people who loved her and cared about her," another close friend, Tiara Kelley, said. 

At a candlelight vigil Sunday, dozens of people gathered to pray. They also passed out flyers in hopes that someone knows something about Garden’s death. 

Crimeline is now offering a $5,000 cash reward for anyone who can help make an arrest. 

"We want justice for this crime,” Williams said. “So many different times, trans violence happens, and we don’t get justice, and we’re coming together to let the community know that we want justice for this case.”

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Garden's death caused controversy when Orange County sheriff’s deputies were criticized for initially calling Garden a man wearing a wig. 

Sheriff Jerry Demings issued a statement Saturday apologizing on behalf of his department for the initial victim description. 

"I appreciate Jerry Demings rectifying and extending an apology," said Garden's friend, Rose Harnedo.

Harnedo said she hopes the mix-up can be a conversation starter in the community when it comes to awareness.

Anyone with information about Garden's death is asked to call Crimeline at 1-800-423-8477.  


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