Local News

5 years later, Faith Hedgepeth's death still has 'profound impact' on UNC campus

Posted September 6, 2017 10:35 p.m. EDT
Updated July 13, 2018 2:05 p.m. EDT

— Faith Hedgepeth would have been a UNC graduate by now. Many of her classmates are no longer at the school, but her name is still spoken on campus.

On Wednesday, her Native American sorority, Alpha Pi Omega, held a vigil in her memory.

“It is especially important to make sure her name is out there and people don’t stop talking about it until her perpetrator is put behind bars,” said sorority member Gabrielle James.

In September 2012, Hedgepeth was found dead in her off-campus apartment on Old Chapel Hill Road. Autopsy reports show she was beaten to death and sustained severe head injuries.

“Remembering those last moments was a difficult time,” said Hedgepeth’s friend, Euna Chavis.

Chavis was with Hedgepeth the evening before her death was discovered.

“I was with her at a sorority event until about 6:30 that night and I texted her until about 9 o’clock that night,” she said.

Police still consider Hedgepeth’s murder an active case. Over the years, authorities have reportedly followed leads, offered a reward and released a sketch of the potential suspect. Still, no arrests have been made.

3-d composite sketch

“The impact her death had on the indigenous community in North Carolina was very profound,” James said.

Five years later, her impact is still felt.

“Keep the faith and we have hope one day that we will have closure,” Chavis said.

Chapel Hill police said there have been no new developments in Hedgepeth’s case and they plan to issue a release Thursday, on the anniversary of the crime, to raise awareness and hopefully generate new leads.