Metropolitan Police Department (DC Police / MPD)

DC Woman Who Disappeared Before Thanksgiving Found Stabbed

Who killed Joni Rockingham? The woman who disappeared from Northeast D.C. the day before Thanksgiving was found stabbed to death on Tuesday, and police are searching for her killer.

Police had been searching for Rockingham for nearly a month when someone found her fully clothed body stuffed inside a garbage can behind an abandoned home on the 300 block of 34th Street NE.

The 53-year-old mother had been stabbed, police said. Her death has been ruled a homicide.

Police believe whoever killed Rockingham was familiar with the neighborhood and the abandoned home where her body was found. 

Mary Jones said whoever killed her friend is a "monster" and "a despicable person."

The day she disappeared, Rockingham was helping her family get ready for Thanksgiving, they said. She was in a good mood, but after she got a phone call, she walked out the front door without saying a word. 

In another bizarre move, Rockingham left her purse and identification behind, her family said. Her phone was off.


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Her family waited and worried, spending Thanksgiving without her. The next day, they reported her missing. 

"I talk to my mom almost every single day. If she don't reach me, she's leaving a voicemail on my phone saying 'Why haven't you contacted me?' It's unlike her. We haven't seen her," Rockingham's daughter, Tenisha Rockingham, said a week after her mother disappeared. 

On Tuesday, Joni Rockingham was found murdered less than a half-mile away from the Ames Street NE home where she was last seen.  

"It's really a tragedy for our family," Joni Rockingham's sister, Trina Rockingham, said. "We've been looking and looking and looking."

Anyone with information that can help police is asked to call 202-727-9099. A reward of up to $25,000 is being offered for information that leads to an arrest. 

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