Sanaa Amenhotep, the missing 15-year-old daughter of a Newark, New Jersey anti-violence activist, was reportedly kidnapped and murdered after leaving her South Carolina home.
According to NJ.com, Amenhotep had been missing for three weeks prior to the discovery of her body, which was found in a wooded-area in Lexington County on Thursday (April 29). Newark Mayor Ras Baraka has since reacted to the tragic news and offered condolences to Sharif Malik Amenhotep, a member of the city’s Brick City Peace Collective.
“On behalf of the people of Newark, I would like to express my sincere condolences to Sharif Malik Amenhotep, on the tragic loss of his beautiful and intelligent Black daughter, Sanaa Amenhotep, who was kidnapped and murdered in South Carolina,” Baraka said in a statement.
Additionally, Baraka applauded Sharif’s work in the community and acknowledged his huge loss.
“Mr. Amenhotep works tirelessly to increase justice and reduce violence in our neighborhoods through our Brick City Peace Collective, helping us to re-imagine public safety and prevent tragedies such as this from taking place in our very own community,” he added. “No parent should ever have to bury their child. It is an inexplicable loss that defies imagination.
“We hope that the South Carolina authorities can bring the suspects in this case to justice. Our entire city is joining with the Amenhotep family in their grief and pain.”
So far, a juvenile has been arrested, according to Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott. Authorities are also seeking to arrest Treveon Jamar Nelson on a kidnapping warrant. Both have not yet been charged with the teen’s death.
NJ.com reports that Sanaa left her Columbia home on April 5 voluntarily with two acquaintances prior to being held against her will. Further details surrounding her kidnapping or her exact relation to the suspects have not yet been released.
Earlier this month, Sharif Malik told WIS that he truly misses his daughter and that “she means everything to me.”
Sanaa’s parents were informed of their daughter’s death on Thursday morning (April 29).