A 16-year-old girl whose body was found near Lake Lanier was murdered, officials confirmed Monday.
But investigators declined to comment on how Hannah Truelove was killed. Still, perhaps the question that many are asking is why anyone wanted the Gainesville High School student dead.
Days before a resident found her body near her Lake Lanier Club Apartments home, Hannah sent out some disturbing messages on Twitter.
Now investigators are trying to determine if they were simply the mere musings of an emotional teen – or a cry for help.
“Was Facebook, Twitter and other social networking media devices part of her life? It was. Whether it played a part or not, we are not sure about that at this point,” Hall County Sheriff’s Maj. Woodrow Tripp said, according to a media report.
At 2:03 p.m. on Aug. 12, the 16-year-old sent out a message saying, “I got an ugly (expletive) stalker. But this was followed by more light-hearted tweets.
At 7:23 p.m. on Aug. 18, she posted, “So scared right now.”
At 5:31 p.m. on Wednesday, the day before she disappeared, she tweeted, “I need to move out of these dang apartments.”
Hannah was last seen about 7:30 p.m. Thursday at Lake Lanier apartments, where she lived with her mother, according to the Hall County Sheriff’s deputies. Her mother reported her missing about 10 p.m. that night.
About 7:30 p.m. Friday, a resident at the apartment complex found her body in a wooded area behind the complex, near Lake Lanier, Sgt. Stephen Wilbanks said.
“I can’t get into the specifics of the exact cause of death other than the fact that it was a homicide and it was by violent means,” Maj. Tripp said, according to CBS Atlanta.
Though they have not identified a suspect, investigators believe she was killed by someone she knows. Someone she trusted enough to follow into the woods.
“We are looking at several different persons of interest,” Maj. Tripp said.
Hannah’s father, Mr. Jeff Truelove, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution his daughter showed no signs of being troubled when he took her to the Commerce outlet mall to outfit her for school a week earlier.
“She made no mention of anything to me. But maybe it was one of those things that kids tell to kids,” he said.
Hannah’s neighbors said they saw the brown-haired, blue-eyed girl walking toward the picnic tables at Lake Lanier Club Apartments about 4 p.m. Thursday, where she was often seen relaxing and sending tweets.
Other neighbors placed her there as late as 7:30 p.m. But so far, no one has mentioned seeing her with anyone. The resident found Hannah’s body the next day about a quarter mile from those tables.
Sgt. Kiley Sargent said there were obvious injuries to her body, but provided no details about those injuries.
Mr. Truelove told the AJC he was in the midst of teaching his daughter to drive. The teen who had two cats and a Yorkie dog, Jake, told him she wanted to become a veterinarian.
“She was a very loving girl,” her father said. “She was just daddy’s little girl.”
Several of Hannah’s friends at school said they saw some of the troubling tweets, but didn’t know what to make of them and so they said nothing.
“I didn’t take it seriously,” Ms. Cristina Robles, a sophomore, told the AJC. Now, she said, “I think I could have helped and talked to her about it and taken it more seriously.”
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