Missing Princeton student Misrach Ewunetie, 20, was found dead near her campus on Thursday, six days after she mysteriously vanished, police said. The remains of Ewunetie were discovered at around 1 pm by a facilities employee near the edge of the New Jersey campus by the tennis courts, the university and law enforcement officials announced.
The exact cause of her death is still not known. However, they also mentioned that "there were no obvious signs of injury and her death does not appear suspicious or criminal in nature." No further details on the cause of death have been shared, and an autopsy will now be performed.
Found Dead at Last
Her body was discovered by the university's Recreation Department 1.5 miles from her dwelling, close to State Road where there is a walking trail, a community pool, and sports facilities. The remains were in a segregated portion and the area is only accessible to those with valid badges.
No further details about the cause of death have been shared but it is unlikely that any foul play was involved.
"Misrach's death is an unthinkable tragedy. Our hearts go out to her family, her friends and the many others who knew and loved her," Princeton VP W. Rochelle Calhoun said.
"Princeton is a close-knit community, and we mourn Misrach together."
Calhoun stated that the school plans to hold a memorial celebration in honor of Ewunetie. However, no details have been made shared yet.
Ewunetie, a resident of Scully Hall at Princeton University, was last seen at around three in the morning on October 14. The evening before she vanished, she had volunteered at Princeton's Terrace Club for a live music performance.
The last-minute agreement was made following the cancellation of another employee who was supposed to work the event.
"On Thursday night, one of our members who was initially signed up for duty was unable to attend our event, and Misrach volunteered to cover their shift. After the club had closed and all of the duty responsibilities had been fulfilled, Misrachâas well as the other members on dutyâleft for the night," the eating club said in a statement.
It is not known how Ewunetie exactly died and an investigation has been launched to determine the nature of death. A multi-day search for Ewunetie's whereabouts led to the use of drones, helicopters, and aquatic vehicles all over the Ivy League college, after she vanished.
Ewunetie, a junior at the prestigious school, was last seen cleaning her teeth in Scully Hall in the early hours of the morning. Her brother claimed that before going silent, her phone had beeped close to an off-campus housing complex, roughly a 30-minute walk from her dorm.
Police searched the housing complex three times with no success, and school administrators issued several notifications pleading for anyone with information to come forward.
When Ewunetie's family heard she had missed an appointment for her US citizenship application, they notified the authorities on Saturday. Ewunetie's family is from Ethiopia initially, but they currently reside in Ohio.
"She is the gem of the house, their only daughter and the youngest," her brother Universe Ewunetie recently told the Sun. "She is very loved."
On Thursday, just hours before authorities discovered her dead, her distraught brother, Universe, appeared on ABC's "Good Morning America" and begged for her to come back. "We just want the law to be faster because time is of the essence," he said. "We can take any help we can find."
He had remarked that it was odd that his sister's phone had rung when she was off-campus, describing the lush Ivy-League campus as "very insular." "So it's very odd that her phone would be off campus. Like everything is on campus," he said.
The ping was located at a New Jersey housing complex near Penns neck. Police officers had already informed Universe that the investigation would take time. Since the discovery of Ewunetie's body, no other information about that ping has been disclosed.
"That's one thing we don't have," he said. "We don't have time."
Ewunetie's LinkedIn profile said she was studying sociology with a certificate in the "Applications of Computing." "I aim to bring value to the corporate world through innovative problem solving and data analysis skills that will continue to grow as I pursue my education at Princeton," she wrote in her bio.
The star student worked as a summer business analyst intern at McKinsey & Company's Ohio branch for the past two summers. She enrolled in Princeton in the fall of 2020 and was set to graduate in 2024.