Frustrated with the local police investigation of Kenneka Jenkins’ death, some Chicago activists are planning protests to encourage the FBI to examine the case.
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Community activist Mark Carter intends to lead a 30-day protest targeting businesses in Rosemont, Illinois, where 19-year-old Jenkins was found dead in a hotel walk-in freezer, to prompt an independent investigation.
“If we can’t get the answers that we want, then we must cause Rosemont an economic hardship,” hes said, according to WGN-TV.
Carter added: “They must feel this. No cover up. You will not cover up the death of our children. This has gone on for far too long.”
The news outlet reported that family and friends held a memorial service on Saturday for the teen. Not long after they honored her life with the symbolic release of purple balloons, many of them marched to FBI Chicago headquarters and urged the bureau to open an investigation.
Jenkins’ mother—and scores of others—believe the Rosemont police failed to properly investigate the case from the start, and there’s a possible cover-up to hide incompetence.
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“If I’m just looking for help, that’s all I’ve been asking for since day one,” said Tereasa Martin, Jenkins’ mother, who led the way in urging the FBI to take up the case.
“It doesn’t make sense – and I’m not a professional, but the FBI from what I heard – they are professionals,” Martin added, referring to surveillance video released by local authorities.
Jenkins went missing early Sept. 9 after a night of partying with friends at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Rosemont, a suburban of Chicago. She was found dead in a walk-in storage freezer in the same hotel. Police investigators concluded that she staggered drunk into the freezer and closed the door. However, evidence began emerging on social media that suggests foul play was involved.
NBC News Chicago reported that the police released on Friday 36 hours of hotel surveillance video, which shows the teenager staggering. However, none of the footage shows her walking into the freezer. That omission has led many to believe the police altered the video.
Carter wants the FBI to take “a second look to make sure these tapes weren’t altered,” NBC reported.
He’s not alone in calling for a federal probe: