Young Woman’s Family Awarded Wrongful Death Settlement

Young Woman's Family Awarded Wrongful Death Settlement

( – The family of Kenneka Jenkins, a teenager who died in a hotel’s freezer in 2017, has been awarded a $10 million wrongful death settlement.

The 19-year-old’s body was discovered inside of a walk-in freezer at the Crown Plaza hotel near Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport. Authorities said she “wandered” into the Crowne Plaza’s freezer, located in the hotel’s kitchen. The area is off limits to guests. Hypothermia was later determined as her cause of death after an autopsy. They also found that she had consumed alcohol with medication designed to control migraines and epilepsy.

Jenkins visited the hotel with friends to attend a party. Her relatives began searching for her the following day after she never came home. Her mother, Teresa Martin, launched her own investigation at the hotel. Employees called the police on her after she spent hours knocking on nearly every door in the hotel asking if her daughter had been seen.

Martin called 911 after she was unable to find her daughter. Some of her friends also called 911 to report her missing. Her friends told Martin that they lost sight of Jenkins after she left them to search for her missing phone. They tried to meet her later but couldn’t find her. They also claimed that Jenkins had only consumed one alcoholic beverage.

The officer who responded to Martin’s call advised that she wait a few hours at home before to see if she returned. Authorities found Jenkins’ body after Martin eventually filed a missing person’s report.

Her death attracted global attention. Over 1000 attendees showed up to her funeral. The family received enough donations to cover expenses for her burial. Reports initially indicated that her relatives received $6 million, but the higher number was confirmed shortly after. Martin attempted to prevent the details of the settlement from being released to protect the family’s privacy. They initially sought a $50 million lawsuit. Martin will receive the largest share of the lawsuit.

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