Another year has gone by and Chapel Hill Police are still looking for the person who murdered 19-year-old UNC student Faith Hedgepeth in September 2012 when her body was found in her apartment.
But Chapel Hill Police assistant chief Celisa Lehew doesn’t want anyone to assume this case is cold.
“It is an ongoing investigation,” Lehew said in an interview with WCHL on Wednesday. “Investigators do work the case each and every day. We are confident that somebody out there has some information that will lead us to an arrest and/or assist with the case.”
New information continues to be reported regarding Hedgepeth’s murder, according to Lehew.
“Faith was described by all as very loving,” Lehew said. “So she had a lot of associates, people she knew. Everybody would meet Faith and think of her as a friend.
“So there is a lot of contacts that continue to be made.”
Lehew said that this anniversary serves as a reminder that can be used to continue soliciting new information.
“Obviously, at this time of year and always, our thoughts and prayers go to Faith’s family and her friends,” Lehew said. “But we also use this as an opportunity to let everybody know that this is an active, ongoing case.
“And, again, we firmly believe that somebody has – no matter how small they might think it is – they have information that will help us in this case.”
The assistant chief added that it was particularly important to continue these calls for information in a community that has a population turnover like Chapel Hill does.
“This is a horrific crime,” Lehew said, “but if we can continue to make sure that everybody is aware that this is an open and ongoing investigation and if something is heard, no information is too small.”
Lehew said this case is especially difficult because of the nature of the crime and the publicity the case has received over the years, which has led to a more public discussion of the investigation.
“There is inaccuracies out there,” Lehew said. “And it is a balance to have to deal with that as well as what we know to be fact within the investigation.
“I often get asked, ‘what’s your theory?’ Investigators, police, we don’t deal in theories. We deal in fact.”
But Lehew remained confident someone has information that will lead to an arrest and conviction in this case.
“Very rarely will you have a crime occur where nobody has talked about it or there hasn’t been some kind of knowledge out there,” Lehew said. She added that with the nature of the crime it could take some time before someone with information was prepared to come to authorities.
Lehew said Chapel Hill Police have a strong relationship with the Hedgepeth family and that they are in contact often.