Teen violently murdered during Florida family vacation - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Teen violently murdered during Florida family vacation

15-year-old Courtney Wilkes 15-year-old Courtney Wilkes
21-year-old Steven Cozzie 21-year-old Steven Cozzie

TOOMBS CO., GA (WTOC) - The memorial at Toombs County High school continues to grow with messages remembering 15-year-old Courtney Wilkes.

Wilkes was murdered in Walton County, Florida near Panama City where her family was vacationing. She was a star soccer player on the school team and also at the top of her class.

The Walton County Sheriff says Wilkes' mother reported her missing at 4 p.m. on Thursday.

She was last seen going for a walk with 21-year-old Steven Cozzie, a resident of the area near Seagrove Beach.

By 5:30 p.m., the sheriff says her body was found, and by 6 p.m., deputies arrested Cozzie for the murder.

The sheriff says Cozzie is showing no remorse and is seen smiling in his mug shot.

Officials say he violently killed the 15-year-old within just 500 yards of where she and her family were staying.

Cozzie was denied bond.

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