48ºF

Family of murdered Halifax County woman using billboard to try to bring killer to justice

Emma Layne murdered in 2017

HALIFAX COUNTY, Va. – "This is kind of like pushing it down the murderer's throat and the one's covering (for them)," Shawna Krohn, Emma Layne's sister, said about the billboard that has been put up along L.P. Bailey memorial Highway in Halifax County to help bring her sister's killer to justice.

Krohn hopes the billboard let's Emma's killer know her family is never going to stop seeking justice.

On Tuesday morning, Krohn and Emma's other sister, Wynona Childress, laid bouquets of flowers in front of the billboard.

"Her remains have not been released to her family," Childress said. "We don't have a memorial place. We haven't been able to have a memorial service."

Emma was reported missing in June of 2017.

Her remains were found in a shallow grave about five months later.

Shawna and Wynona said investigators have a suspect, but don't have enough evidence to make an arrest.

The advertisement of the $10,000 reward they're offering is meant to change that.

"I don't use the word hope. It's all about determination. I don't have 'hope' in my vocabulary. I've got determination and faith," Krohn said.

"(The billboard) also lets other people know that if they have a missing person in their family or a friend or someone who has been murdered, they don't just have to sit there and do nothing," Childress said.

The billboard was put up by the Roanoke-based AWARE Foundation, which spreads information about people who have been reported missing.

Founder Kenny Jarels said the company that owns the billboard has agreed to keep it up for at least a month.

"We want no glory for anything we do. We want some resolution for the family. In this case, we want the suspect brought to justice. So, it would be rewarding knowing we played a small role in that," Jarels said.

"This is kind of a way for Emma to say, 'You know what? I'm here. I'm going to get my justice," Krohn said.

If you have any information about the case, call 434-476-8445.