NORFOLK, Va. - Parents of the 19-year-old college student who was kidnapped from Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story in September are supporting a petition to boycott Blimpie.
Na'Rabia White, one of Ashanti Billie's former co-workers at the Blimpie, tells News 3 she was fired shortly after Ashanti's body was found and Eric Brian Brown was arrested.
The online petition on change.org currently has more than 2,000 signatures.
White, who only worked at the Blimpie for two months, says she believes the sandwich shop wanted a fresh start after the death of Ashanti, since many of the coworkers knew Brown from his constant visits to the shop.
"He came in there all the time he would always get the same smoothie and I would always make it," said White.
News 3 reached out to Blimpie for comment about the firings and the petition, but they did not immediately respond to our calls or emails.
Meltony Billie, Ashanti's father, is one of those who signed it. In a text message, Meltony told News 3 he was surprised to see the petition. He continued by saying that his family owes many thanks to community activists and concerned citizens that helped find Ashanti and are continuing to get justice for her.
In court documents, it says Ashanti's coworkers helped the FBI throughout their investigation. Documents say coworkers told the FBI that Brown stopped coming into the shop after Ashanti disappeared. They also say coworkers told investigators that Brown tried to flirt with Ashanti at the restaurant and even made crude comments towards her.
After Ashanti disappeared, Blimpie added $10,000 to the FBI's reward for information leading to an arrest in the case.