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Merritt Island man charged with murder in strangulation death of sister

Investigators believe Christian attempted to sexually assault his sister

Detectives responded to the Garden Apartments on Ligustrum Lane in Merritt Island Nov. 3 to investigate the death of J'Meisha Gant. (Photo: Tyler Vazquez/Florida Today)
Detectives responded to the Garden Apartments on Ligustrum Lane in Merritt Island Nov. 3 to investigate the death of J'Meisha Gant. (Photo: Tyler Vazquez/Florida Today)

BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. – A Merritt Island man was arrested Friday after detectives say he murdered his sister at their apartment last month, News 6 partner Florida Today reports.

When J’Meisha Gant, 19, was found unresponsive on Sunday, Nov. 3, Brevard County detectives immediately began an investigation at the Garden Apartments on Ligustrum Lane on Merritt Island.

Gant’s body was discovered by her mother, Audrey Hughey, who returned to the apartment that day after a weekend trip.

Soon after, medical examiners determined that she died of strangulation.

Detectives said Gant’s 22-year-old brother, Darius Christian, had been the only person with access to the apartment during the weekend.

“Although Darius did not confess to the murder, agents were able to prove he was not being truthful about his activities and his denials related to the homicide,” Sheriff Wayne Ivey said.

Detectives said Darius conducted internet searches related to bleaching, cleaning a crime scene and destroying DNA evidence just after the death of his sister.

Bleach was found not only at the scene of the homicide but also on J’Meisha’s body, which had also been “staged” by Darius, according to Ivey.

"Darius Christian had also conducted numerous internet searches related to brother and sister incest" in the days leading up to the killing, Ivey said.

Investigators believe Christian attempted to sexually assault his sister when she resisted and he strangled her.

Christian was arrested on a first-degree premeditated murder charge and is being held at the Brevard County Jail without bond.

“I’ve lost two of my children and my life will never be the same,” the mother of both victim and suspect, Audrey Hughey, said through tears.