Kenneka Jenkins, a 19-year-old woman, was found dead inside a walk-in freezer at a hotel in Rosemont, Illinois after she was reported missing following a party there, and her death has become a viral mystery with every scrap of video analyzed by Internet sleuths.
Jenkins’ outraged mother has alleged that her daughter met with foul play, as have people on social media, and a Facebook Live and other videos from that night – the hotel party, in an elevator, in a bathroom – have gone viral, with people dissecting them frame-by-frame. You can watch them below.
Jenkins’ death has been ruled an accident by the coroner. Her cause of death was hypothermia and “cold exposure in a walk-in freezer” and “ethanol and topiramate intoxication,” the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office said, according to CNN.
On social media, many questions have been raised, some of them posted on the Facebook page of Jenkins’ friend Monifah Shelton. She responded to the critics in one post, writing, “Everybody on here talking just pointing fingers just pray she okay and make it home.” Jenkins didn’t make it home. You can watch the key video below that features another person at the party that night, Irene Roberts. It was streamed on Shelton’s Facebook page:
Some people have alleged that they can hear Kenneka crying for help in the video. The family believes Kenneka is reflected in Irene’s sunglasses in the video. According to Buzzfeed, Jenkins, who was also known as Kenneka Martin, “was pronounced dead at 12:48 a.m. Sunday after her body was discovered in the freezer of the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Rosemont, Illinois.”
After an activist claimed police had given the family video showing Kenneka wandering into the freezer on her own, the family disputed they had been given such a video, and this video was released:
Police released a lengthy new statement on September 13 that gave some details on the scope of the investigation: They’re reviewing footage from 47 hotel videos, conducting forensic analysis on other videos, and they’ve located and interviewed 12 people and are seeking more.
According to The Washington Post, the video “appears to show Jenkins and others listening to loud music inside a hotel room.” The Post added that Jenkins’ mother told the news media that Jenkins’ friends told her Jenkins “disappeared after they briefly left her alone in the hotel hallway to retrieve her car keys and cellphone from inside the room.” She has accused police and the hotel of not responding quickly enough to her daughter’s disappearance.
According to The Chicago Tribune, police “are reviewing video on social media that appears to show the victim in a ninth-floor room hours before she disappeared over the weekend.” That’s the video with the woman with the mirrored sunglasses (Roberts), reported The Tribune, which described it as “a Facebook Live video that appears to show Jenkins sitting on a bed in a hotel room with other people around her.”
“Reflected in her (Roberts’) glasses is the other side of the hotel room, where Jenkins appears to be sitting,” the newspaper reported, quoting the police spokesman as saying that toxicology tests were being conducted, people interviewed, and “I don’t think anything has been ruled in or ruled out at this point.”
Police, reported The Tribune, “have yet to say how 19-year-old Kenneka Jenkins died or why she was in a freezer in a vacant area of the Crowne Plaza Chicago O’Hare Hotel & Conference Center.”
The Washington Post reported that Kenneka was found inside an industrial walk-in freezer “more than 24 hours after leaving her home on Chicago’s West Side to party with friends at the hotel and conference center near O’Hare International Airport.”
“To me, I feel like they helped kill my child: the police department and this hotel,” Teresa Martin, Jenkins’ mother alleged, according to The Post, which added that an autopsy was inconclusive, and “it remains unclear how Jenkins died.”
Shelton has filled her Facebook page with comments about Kenneka. Be aware that the language is graphic at times.
“Come home so I could see yo big ass smile 😩 idk how to feel right now I’m literally sick to my stomach 😪 I love u so much 🤞🏾 & I hate this even happening to you right now I’m over here praying for you baby wherever u at I hope u okay god got you 🙏🏾 Kenneka Martin,” Monifah wrote on social media.
Shelton wrote on Facebook on September 10: “Everybody Kno our bond was tight 🤞🏾👭she was the sweet friend 😘I was the mean friend 😡 Mfs Kno I didn’t play about her & she didn’t play about me 🤞🏾👭💪🏾 I’m so sorry this happen to u u didn’t deserve it u 😪💔 I’m missing tf outta u #Sister4Life.”
She also wrote: “Please come home g this shit so bogus I was drunk not lookin out for u that’s where I fucked up at I should of turn around I should of did something but I thought u was behind me g it’s hurting me bro knowing I didn’t have u like I suppose to had u it’s my fault I’m so sorry g please come home please be safe god please let her be okay Kenneka.”
And, “Can y’all please leave me alone bro we been bestfriend since 3rd grade we did everything together literally everything we use to call ourself the nene twins 🤞🏾👭 we slept together ate together broke bread together that was my ace 💔😪it hurting me I never thought I was be doin this we suppose to be takin trips we had shit planned out I’m so sorry g 🤦🏽♀️ we sisters for life.”
“Please god let her be okay 🙏🏾 she don’t deserve to be goin thru this 😪,” she wrote further. And: “u got me out here finna lose my mind I’m praying 🙏🏾 so hard kenneka.” And: “Bro I don’t give no fuck what nobody sayin I love u more then anything I will never hurt chu man 💔😪 come home please kenneka I never felt like this before you got me sick I Kno everybody gone talk but it don’t even matter just pop up come home 🙏🏾god please let her return home safe amen.”
She also wrote: “Bro all us was drunk off our shit I’m not pointing fingers at nobody g this shit hurt so bad to Kno u was just enjoying yourself with ur bestfriend when I haven’t been outside in so long y’all need to shut tf up bro Fr I’m sick of all this shit y’all wanna hear y’all self talking just pray help I been doin all I can to look for her I never would think some shit like this would happen it could of been anyone of us I hate this even happening I hate when even went im trying bro and I will never hide nothing 💯 just pray 🙏🏾 I Kno he hear us god we need u right now.”
Read more about Kenneka Jenkins here: