Family still seeking justice as 2012 murder of Eastern Michigan University student remains unsolved

‘Why has it been eight years?’ mother asks

Family still seeking justice as 2012 murder of Eastern Michigan University student remains unsolved

YPSILANTI, Mich. – The family of an Eastern Michigan University (EMU) student who was found murdered in her apartment in 2012 are still looking for justice.

Eight years after Julia Niswender’s death, the case remains unsolved.

The family recently want the Ypsilanti Police Department to hand the case over to Michigan State Police. The Niswender family said Christmas is a particularly difficult time for them.

“She loved Christmas,” said Jennifer Niswender, Julia’s sister.

“I still feel the pain,” said mother Kim Turnquist. “That pain never goes away. That pain never lessens.”

The family visited Julia’s grave to honor her memory and share their frustration that her killer has never been brought to justice.

“I still feel anger that it’s been eight years and we were told this as a solvable case,” Turnquist said. “Why has it been eight years?”

Julia was 23-years-old when the Eastern Michigan University student was found dead in her Ypsilanti apartment on Dec. 11, 2012.

She was bound and in the bathtub. Police said she died from asphyxiation associated with drowning.

“They know they know what today is and they know that what this week means to us and how hard it is,” Jennifer Niswender said. “And I did reach out and I asked for any sort of date, and the detective did respond.”

The family wants more done on the case and they’ve asked Michigan State Police to take over the investigation.

“I’m not saying they haven’t done anything,” Turnquist said. “I just think eight years is a little too long.”

“It’s not an impossibility. A new person with a new set of eyes looks at the case and maybe sees something that they missed,” said Julia’s grandfather, James Niswender.

The family is still seeking justice for Julia. They want anyone who knows anything to speak up.

“Somebody must know some details that could be a clue that breaks the case wide open,” James Niswender said.

“They can speak up if they have ever heard the littlest thing,” Turnquist said.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-Speak-Up.

More: Metro Detroit crime news

About the Authors:

Karen Drew is the anchor of Local 4 News First at 4, weekdays at 4 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. She is also an award-winning investigative reporter and part of the Local 4 Defenders team.

Dane is a producer and media enthusiast. He previously worked freelance video production and writing jobs in Michigan, Georgia and Massachusetts. Dane graduated from the Specs Howard School of Media Arts.