Mother, detective ask for new leads in 21-year-old cold case - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Mother, detective ask for new leads in 21-year-old cold case

Joy Lary says they originally offered a $1,000 reward for information leading to an arrest and she still plans on honoring it. (Source: Eric Pointer/ KSLA News 12) Joy Lary says they originally offered a $1,000 reward for information leading to an arrest and she still plans on honoring it. (Source: Eric Pointer/ KSLA News 12)
Ronnie Gryder sits reviewing files from the Justin Lee Edwards case. (Source: Eric Pointer/KSLA News 12) Ronnie Gryder sits reviewing files from the Justin Lee Edwards case. (Source: Eric Pointer/KSLA News 12)
America's Most Wanted featured an article about Justin Lee Edwards' murder in its magazine. (Source: Eric Pointer/ KSLA News 12) America's Most Wanted featured an article about Justin Lee Edwards' murder in its magazine. (Source: Eric Pointer/ KSLA News 12)
Joy Lary, who wrote a book about coping with her son's murder hosted a speaking engagement at Love Chapel to discuss the topic. (Source: Joy Lary) Joy Lary, who wrote a book about coping with her son's murder hosted a speaking engagement at Love Chapel to discuss the topic. (Source: Joy Lary)
The event even featured a birthday cake for her son, who's birthday is coming up. (Source: Joy Lary) The event even featured a birthday cake for her son, who's birthday is coming up. (Source: Joy Lary)
SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) -

A grieving mother and a retired Shreveport detective hope to get new details about a homicide that happened in 1996.

Justin Lee Edwards died after being shot twice in the back just before 2 a.m. July 27, 1996, in front of Longhorn Saloon in Shreveport.

No one has been arrested.

Joy Lary, Edwards' mother, admits it would take a toll on their family if and when an arrest is made.

"Even talking to Mr. Gryder has been difficult for me because hearing his voice and hearing him say Justin's name just brought me all the way back to the day it happened.

"I actually thought that it was all a big mistake," Lary continued. "I didn't think that it was true. I thought they had the wrong person."

She recalled the night she found out.

"I just sprang out of the bed. I mean it just felt like my heart was just going to beat out of my chest. I've never had that feeling before or since; and I hope I never do."

Lary said she's already forgiven her son's killer but she still would like to know who did it to get them off the streets.

"I mean if he murdered my son, he'll murder somebody else. So, for that reason, I would like to see him get arrested and get him off the streets."

The lead investigator on the case, now-retired Shreveport Detective Ronnie Gryder, thinks he knows who killed Edwards but doesn't have the evidence to put them away.

"He's walked free all these years; and it's time for someone to step forward."

Gryder said he reviews the case every few months to see if there is anything he missed.

"I've carried this case with me since that day. It is one of those cases that if you're a detective, you kind of look back on it and you work on it from time to time." 

Gryder thinks there were several people there that night who know what happened.

"I'm hoping that somebody from that bar is watching me now and they can find it in their heart to come back and say "Hey, I did see what happened. I know what happened and it's time for me to tell the story'."

Lary has written a book about her grief journey since her son was killed.

While the book has been a blessing, she said. it also has brought the case back up for her.

"In some ways, that's been difficult. But it's worth it. I still want to get my story out."

Lary wants other people who have been through similar experiences to see her and be encouraged to be able to get there, too.

She said she also got "America's Most Wanted" to run an article about her son's death in its magazine. 

On the one-year anniversary of her son's death, Lary said, they posted fliers throughout Shreveport with information about a $1,000 reward for information leading to an arrest.

She said they still plan on honoring that reward.

Anyone with any information about the case can contact Shreveport police. Or call Shreveport-Caddo Crime Stoppers at (318) 673-7373.

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