Family of 11-year-old victim speaks out as they plan memorial services to honor the child

Posted at 3:47 PM, May 23, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-23 15:48:27-04

NORFOLK, Va. – For the first time, the family of the 11-year-old who died last Friday is speaking to News 3 about the family tragedy.

Heaven Watkins was just 11, but her family told News 3’s Rachael Cardin she made an impact on everyone who knew her.

We spoke to Heaven’s cousin over the phone; she is in Minnesota and did not want to be identified because of the pending criminal investigation but said everyone wants to see justice served.

“Justice for Heaven, we will get justice because we know who did it and all that, everything is coming to light and I just feel like Heaven is trying to talk to me through you guys,” she said by phone on Wednesday afternoon.

One day after Heaven was found dead inside her Ocean View home, her mother Latoya Smith, and the mother’s boyfriend Demont Harris were arrested for murder. They appeared in court Monday and are expected back in court next week.

Heaven had autism and cerebral palsy, but family said she did not let that stop her.

“She was outgoing, outspoken. She didn’t, like, hide anything from anyone. She always told us things that were going, and I’m pretty sure she put up a fight when everything happened,” the cousin said.

As the family plans a memorial service in Minnesota, neighbors are planning one in Ocean View on Balview Avenue for Friday night at 7:30.

Neighbors said Heaven’s two little sisters are with Child Protective Services, though family said they have an aunt who plans to come get them.


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