Kenneka Jenkins was last seen Friday evening by her mother Tereasa Martin. Over the course of three days, her 19-year-old daughter went from a missing person to a theorized homicide case with tons of speculation from the internet.
ESSENCE has not been able to confirm that any foul play took place —Detective Joe Balogh of the Rosemont Public Safety Department told ESSENCE the status of the case is still a “death investigation.”
And while we’ve reported on what we know here, here’s a compiled timeline to trace Jenkins’ steps on the night that she went missing.
Tereasa Martin, Jenkins’ mother, told the Chicago Tribune that she last saw her daughter at their West Side home around 11:30 p.m. before she left to hang with friends. Jenkins was going out to celebrate a new job at a local nursing home. Jenkins allegedly didn’t mention the hotel party.
Leonore Harris (pictured center) Jenkins’ sister speaks to Jenkins on the phone while Jenkins is out with friends.
Crowne Plaza Hotel
Jenkins was spotted on surveillance video in the Crowne Plaza Chicago Ohare Hotel & Conf Ctr in Rosemont “staggering” near the front desk— footage is discovered by authorities the following day.
Jenkins’ friends call Martin to explain that they went to a hotel party in the suburb of Rosemont, but couldn’t find Jenkins when it was time to leave. They have her cell phone and car keys, and are in Jenkins’ car.
Crowne Plaza Chicago
Martin arrived at the Crowne Plaza Chicago Ohare Hotel & Conf Ctr in Rosemont to look for her daughter, but was told she would have to file a missing persons’ report before she could view surveillance tapes.
Crowne Plaza Chicago West Loop
Late Morning: Jenkins’ family was finally allowed to file a missing persons report with Chicago Police Department.
Chicago Teen Kenneka Jenkins
An official search for Jenkins begins.
12:48AM: Jenkins’ body is found in a freezer, which reportedly was in a construction area of the Crowne Plaza Chicago Ohare Hotel & Conf Ctr in Rosemont.
5AM: Martin is allowed to see her daughter’s body. She says the body had been removed from the freezer, which appeared to have been defrosted.
A spokesperson tells Fox32 News that the cause and manner of her death are pending “further study.”
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Police confirmed that they were investigating a video posted by one of Jenkins’ friends on Facebook. The video, which had been viewed 3 million times, allegedly shows Jenkins and others in the hotel —hours before her disappearance.
Carl Court—Getty Images
Rosemont police spokesman Gary Mack told ESSENCE that while the inquiry into the teen’s death is garnering the “highest attention,” the status is still a “death investigation.” Mack says, “Since there is no hard evidence pointing in the direction of foul play or homicide, it is still being considered a death investigation. Everything is on the table.”