19 year old Kenneka Jenkins was found dead inside a freezer in the Crowne Plaza hotel in Rosemont. No cause of death has been released and it will apparently take a few weeks until the autopsy results are in; as the initials tests were inconclusive.
There has been a lot of speculation regarding what has happened. Here is what we do know so far:
1. Jenkins went missing early on Saturday morning. She went to a party at the Crowne Plaza Chicago O’Hare Hotel & Conference Center in Rosemont on Friday night and the party was on the 9th floor.
2. Jenkins last made contact with her sister Leonore Harris on Saturday at 1:30 A.M. Somewhere between that time and 4 A.M. she went missing. However, she left her purse and mobile phone with her friends. Her friends contacted her mother, Tereasa Martin, at 4 A.M. to let her know that Jenkins was missing.
3. Martin went to the hotel at 5 A.M. on Saturday with family members to look for her daughter but the hotel staff would not allow the family to search for Jenkins without the police issuing a missing persons report. This caused a delay in finding Jenkins as the missing persons report was not issued until 1:15 P.M. After that, hotel staff started to search for Jenkins.
4. The search lasted 11 hours before Jenkins was found in a freezer at 12:24 A.M. on Sunday. She was pronounced dead at the scene.
5. Police told Martin that Jenkins was seen on hotel surveillance at 3:20 A.M. so drunk that she couldn’t hold herself up and that she was holding onto the wall. Police told Martin that Jenkins may have been inebriated and got herself into the freezer and died inside. However, Martin does not believe that theory and neither does her sister Harris. Harris told WGN: “The freezer door is heavy. So there’s no way. If they’re saying she’s drunk, she don’t have no strength. If she had enough strength to open that freezer door, she would have had enough strength to walk straight.”
6. Police have not released the details of who found Jenkins in the unoccupied freezer that was located in a vacant part of the hotel; that guests of the hotel would not usually have access too.
7. Jenkins’ case has caused an uproar on social media due to the fact that her friend Monifah Shelton had videos from Facebook live on her page. One of the videos shows Irene Roberts recording herself and Monifah making a slight appearance. There has been a lot of speculation about what is taking place during the live video. The video went live at approximately 1:36 A.M. which is just a few minutes after Jenkins spoke to her sister on the phone. A lot of people have made assumptions that foul play was involved and that the friends on the live videos played a part of Jenkins death. Martin also stated that Jenkins’ friends changed their story about the events that took place numerous times; which lead her to believe that her daughter was murdered.
8. Detective Joe Balogh of Rosemont Public Safety Department made the following statement: “We are reviewing footage from the hotel as well as reviewing any social media. There’s been a lot of social media posts and video comments and stuff like that that our detectives are working through to comb through that information as well… We are still actively investigating and interviewing the parties involved. We are trying to locate and contact anyone who was involved that night or who was on location that evening.”
9. Police have not made any arrests as of yet. Balogh has stated that the investigation is a death investigation and not a criminal one. However, Martin believes there was foul play involved but the authorities are still waiting for a toxicology test and autopsy.