Missing Princeton University student Misrach Ewunetie has been found dead near her campus six days after she vanished.
Multiple law enforcement sources told NBC 4 that the 20-year-old’s body was discovered near the edge of the New Jersey campus on Thursday, by the tennis courts.
Sources noted that there were no signs of trauma on the body, and the Mercer County Prosecutors Office said, ‘Her death does not appear suspicious or criminal in nature.’
No further details on a cause of death have been shared, and an autopsy will now be performed.
The young student’s remains were found in a remote area of the Ivy League campus, which is only open to authorized badge holders.
Ewunetie, was last seen on October 14 at around 3am near Princeton University’s Scully Hall, the residential building where she lived.
She had volunteered at Princeton’s Terrace Club for a live music event the night she was last seen.
It had been a last minute arrangement, after another person who was meant to be working the event dropped out.
Her body was located 1.5 miles from her dwelling, in an area near State Road by the university’s Recreation Department which houses a walking trail, community pool and sports facilities.
Ewunetie’s disappearance triggered a multi-day hunt for her whereabouts that resulted in drones, helicopters and watercraft vehicles being deployed around the Ivy League university.
Misrach Ewunetie, 20, was last seen on October 14 at around 3am near Princeton University’s Scully Hall, the residential building where she lived
Ewunetie was found in this relatively remote area of Princeton campus
It sits behind its tennis courts and the school’s Recreation Department facilities
Officials are pictured near the scene, which lies on the northwest edge of the campus
Several helicopters and drones were also deployed to try and find the missing 20-year-old
Police were spotted all throughout Thursday as the search for the student intensified
Misrach had volunteered at Princeton’s Terrace Club for a live music event the night she was last seen
Princeton’s Vice President for Campus Life W. Rochelle Calhoun called Ewunetie’s death an ‘unthinkable tragedy.’
‘Our hearts go out to her family, her friends and the many others who knew and loved her,’ she said in a statement. ‘We are planning an opportunity for students to join together and remember Misrach. Information about the gathering will be shared separately when details are known.’
A school spokesperson added, ‘We have no additional information to share at this time.’
Campus police had visited Ewunetie’s housing estate three times and have conducted a search with dogs, but were unable to enter any properties due to a lack of search warrants.
Earlier this week, Ewunetie’s brother, Universe, claimed his family had not been getting the full details from police about their search.
‘There’s no constant update or interaction with us,’ Universe told CNN. ‘We’re really kept in the dark.
It was previously revealed that her cellphone last pinged early Sunday morning from a location seven miles from the campus.
The ping was located at a New Jersey housing complex near Penns neck. Police officials had told Universe that the investigation was going to take time.
No further details on that ping have been shared since the discovery of Ewunetie’s body.
‘That’s one thing we don’t have,’ he said. ‘We don’t have time.’
Universe Ewunetie, Misrach’s brother, says the family has been ‘kept in the dark’ by police in their search for the undergraduate who vanished
Universe said Misrach’s friends didn’t think she was missing because they assumed she was safe: ‘Her housemates didn’t look for her because they assumed she went home’
Pictured: Scully Hall on Princeton’s campus where Misrach was last seen
Universe said Misrach had been volunteering at Princeton’s Terrace Club, one of the school’s 11 private eating clubs, on October 13.
Terrace Club is one of the non-private clubs at Princeton, requiring members to only sign up for membership, and is not associated with the university. The clubs are for upperclassmen at the school to eat lunches and participate in various activities.
Other clubs require prospective members to apply for membership.
She was a member on ‘duty’ — performing housekeeping tasks during a live music performance at the club.
That night, the club was hosting Raavi with Jackie Marchal, according to its Instagram page.
After the club had closed and all of the responsibilities had been fulfilled, Misrach, together with other members on duty, left for the night.
Following the event ‘she went back to her dorm at 3am’ her brother said. ‘Her roommates said they saw her at 3am. Then another roommate of hers said she didn’t see her after 4am, and then after that no one has seen her.
‘Her housemates didn’t look for her because they assumed she went home.’
‘With the pandemic, the first year they were not on campus, so that was difficult for her and for a lot of people,’ Universe explained.
‘But this year she’s been trying to get in this Terrace Club, and that was her way of making friends.’
Pictured: The advertisement for Terrace Club’s event on October 13, the night Misrach volunteered
Ewunetie was a 2020 graduate of the Minds Matter Cleveland program, which works to help high-achieving low-income students. Sara Elagad, executive director of the nonprofit told CNN that her former student’s disappearance was very out of character.
‘It is not at all in character for her to purposely go off the radar or be out of touch with family,’ Elagad said. ‘We are supporting her family as they assist law enforcement efforts to safely locate her.’
Ewunetie was valedictorian of her high school and was majoring in sociology with a minor in computer science at Princeton, according to Planet Princeton.
Her family who have lived in Ohio since 2008, but who are originally from Ethiopia, say her disappearance is all the more unsettling after she missed a meeting regarding a citizenship application the following day.
‘She is the gem of the house, [my parents’] only daughter and the youngest,’ Universe said. ‘She is very loved.’