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Family, friends seek answers after teenager found dead in Washington Parish

"Somebody — somebody knows what happened, and we need answers."

ANGIE, La. — “He was an exciting person to be around,” said classmate Darrius Harry.

Eight days after 17-year-old Ja’Quarius Taylor was killed, crime tape can still be seen where his body was found.

“I didn’t believe it at all because I don’t know who would do it to Jay D,” Harry said. “He was innocent and cool with everybody.”

Authorities say he’d been shot in the head and left near the edge of a lake near Varnado. Friends say they’re devastated.

“It was strong, it was important to me, most important friendship I’ve ever had,” said Tamarya. She said he was like a brother to her.

Credit: WWL-TV

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Authorities say someone was going to check the water levels at the lake when they came across the body. They say since local, state and federal authorities have worked together to try and get the family justice.

“It’s been a tough situation, said Pastor Ken Owens. “The sheriff need to talk with the family and assure them it’s a fair investigation.”

Last Thursday a clue, when the St. Tammany Dive Team round a “key piece of evidence” at the bottom of the lake. It’s been taken to the lab for analysis. Family hopes it’ll be one step closer to finding answers.

“Somebody knows what happen,” said Taylor’s aunt, Uratha Bonner.

And they ask for anyone with information to come forward so they can get some peace in this horrific and unexpected situation.

Taylor, who would’ve turned 18 in March, was set to graduate from High school in a few months.

A $5,000 reward is being offered in the case. You can report information anonymously by calling Crimestoppers at 504-822-1111. 

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