GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Since the Gulfport Police Department arrested and charged Alberto Julio Garcia with capital murder in the death of Janaya Thompson, community members say they will sleep easier.
"I was jumping for joy when I was in my apartment. I was at home when it actually was announced. I think the Gulfport Police Department is doing the best they can possible to get this situated," said Luke Bates.
"Justice for Janaya," has been the slogan of choice for people all across South Mississippi since the 5-year-old girl's lifeless body was found in an abandoned trailer on Whitney Drive last week.
"It has been a tough thing for this community. When I say it really has been tough for us, oh we have shed some tears," said one resident.
There is no doubt this tragic murder brought community members of all ages and races together, even the youngest ones wanted to show support for the Thompson family.
"We just felt like we had to come out here and show support to the family, and just let them know that we have them in our prayers and we love them," said Aurelia.
As parents try to explain this tragedy to their little ones, many of them say they have learned a lesson themselves.
"It's got me to where I want my little one next to me everywhere I go. It's sad that you know something like this has got to happen for people to wake up and realize," said Bates.
Several say they will continue to watch over Janaya's memorial and light candles every night so that her family knows while she is gone, she is not forgotten.