WATKINS FAMILY ‘DESTROYED’ AFTER DAUGHTERS DEATH

Originally Reported by WVUA 23 Reporter Chelsea Barton

The family of 20-year-old Willoe Watkins will never be the same after last weekend.

A tip helped investigators discover a vacant house and working well on Will Walker Lane in Tuscaloosa County. With the assistance from local road and bridge departments, investigators excavated a large area and located Watkins’ body 35 feet down inside the well. They believe she had been there since soon after she was last seen alive on June 17.

“I just want justice for her. I love her so much,” Jennifer Cox, Watkins’ stepmother said.

The Watkins’ family described their lives as destroyed after learning the news of what happened to Willoe.

“It’s really hard knowing what she might have gone through and how they just treated her that way,” Cox said.

Kendall Tyler Battles and Joseph Brandon Nevels are behind bars in Tuscaloosa County, charged with Watkin’s murder. A third man, 29-year-old Devon Trent Hall, has also been charged in her murder.

“It’s very tragic,” Lt. Jack Kennedy of the Tuscaloosa Violent Crimes Unit said. “It was brutal. It showed a complete disregard for the sanctity of life.”

The three men were supposedly friends with the 20-year-old victim, Willoe Watkins, investigators said.

Investigators are not releasing how Watkins was killed but, did say they believe she was assaulted and killed at one of the suspects’ homes before the men dumped her body in the well.

“Willoe was the most beautiful, special soul I’ve ever known in my entire life,” Cox said. “I don’t know anybody that did not love her and care about her and we want justice for her.”

Cox had a message to those responsible for endings Watkins’ life and for anyone who may know any additional information about the crime.

“They took away one of the most precious souls I’ve ever known in my entire life and I hope they get punished to the full extent of the law,” Cox said. “If there is anybody else out there that has any information on anyone else that was involved, please come forward and help our family,”

Tuscaloosa Violent Crimes investigators expect more arrests to be made in this case. If you have information that could help them, call 205-464-8690.

A gofundme account has been set up to assist with Willoe’s burial expenses. You can donate by clicking here. 

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