'Justice for Julia' aids scholarship

The Niswenders sold shirts and bracelets to help with a twins scholarship in Julia’s name.

Julia Niswender’s family sold shirts and bracelets for a scholarship fundraiser at the Eastern Michigan University Student Center Friday and Saturday.

“We are on campus today to bring awareness for ‘Justice for Julia,’” said Jennifer Niswender, Julia’s twin sister. “The money we are raising from all the shirts and bracelets is going to go toward a scholarship, set up in my sister’s name, which will be for twins that attend EMU.”

Julia, an EMU student, was found dead in her apartment December 11, 2012, and the Ypsilanti Police Department confirmed it’s a homicide investigation.

“It’s definitely hard to try to do something like this for your child,” said Kim Turnquist, Julia’s mother.
During the event, voluteers handed out fliers with Julia’s picture and the Crime Stopper tip line 1-800-SPEAKUP.

“I am hoping to draw out the person or persons who may know something about Julia’s death,” Turnquist said.

Students shared their support for the family’s efforts.

“It’s a great idea that they want to help others, while focusing on twins,” said Abigail Cowell, a freshman majoring in special education.

Jordyn Shaffer, a freshman studying music theory, said, “My parents have a set of twins and it’s hard financially, especially when they’re both going to college at the same time.”

The family said they were grateful for the support they’ve received from EMU faculty and students.
YPD Lt. Deric Gress said no suspect has been identified in Julia’s death at this time.

Police ask anyone with information regarding this case to contact YPD Sgt. Tom Eberts at 734-482-9878.

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