Jenise Wright’s case has finally gained more details, beginning to provide closure for her family. The autopsy results acquired Friday came back from the coroner’s office revealing that the little girl had been murdered and was a victim of sexual assault. By Saturday afternoon, a teenage neighbor matching the DNA evidence on Wright’s body was arrested. It has been reported that authorities were able to be take him without any trouble. The boy lived in the same mobile home park as Wright’s family.
On Friday, a vigil was held for Jenise Wright where several hundred people came to pay their respects. Denise Wright, the young girl’s mother, extended a heart-felt thank you to all involved with her daughter’s search. The girl’s father also made a statement, saying he hopes that “something positive [comes out of] this tragedy.”
More than 100 people, 15 agencies and the FBI have been working non-stop to solve Wright’s case. Deputy Scott Wilson, a spokesman for the Sheriff’s Office, said that they have been on the investigation since Monday, and that they would diligently continue all day and all night.
“Nobody’s going home,” Wilson said. “We are not giving up.”
Immediately following the discovery of Wright’s body last Thursday, investigators were combing the area to find more clues. They stayed close to the neighborhood where Wright lived with her parents and siblings. Upon closer examination of the Wright house it was discovered that there were no signs of forced entry. This gave no indication that Jenise Wright had been forcibly removed from her home. Her parents confirmed this, saying the little girl was known for wandering off by herself, being in regular contact with everyone around her and then returning safely on her own. The spot where her body turned up four days after her disappearance was muddy and full of thick brush. This lead caused Wilson to determine that Wright’s killer would be most likely covered in mud.
As an elimination factor the investigators on the case went around the neighborhood and took dozens of cheek swabs from residents who would volunteer them. The samples were then used to take away suspects until the DNA from the coroner’s office came back and identified a teenage neighbor boy who was later accused of murdering Jenise Wright.
The family has described Wright as a very outgoing little girl, and they grieve heavily at her loss. Earl Smith, incident commander of the Kitsap County Sheriff’s office, said that she was a “happy child, a bright light for those around her.”
Because he is a minor, the boy’s identity has not been released. FBI officials and the police have reported that, at the time of his arrest, the boy was at his house in the mobile home park.The teenage neighbor allegedly responsible for Jenise Wright’s death was arrested and taken to the Kitsap County Juvenile Detention Center, and is being held on charges of manslaughter, second-degree murder and rape. His first court hearing is scheduled for Monday. Nothing has been confirmed about whether or not the boy and Wright knew each other.
By Rachel Roddy