FBI: $10,000 reward offered for information leading to arrest in Norfolk State student's death

9:10 p.m. Oct. 12 update

A reward of up to $10,000 is being offered for information that leads to the arrest, prosecution, or conviction of the person or people responsible for the death of Ashanti Billie, a 19-year-old Norfolk State student whose body was found in Charlotte, N.C. last month, officials said.

Billie was last seen Sept. 18 driving a 2014 cream-colored Mini Cooper with Maryland Tag 2CX-0575, reporting for work at a sandwich shop on the Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek base in Norfolk, according to a release from FBI spokeswoman Christina Pullen.

Her vehicle was found Sept. 23 in the 9500 block of Lakeside Drive in the Ocean View section of Norfolk, according to the release. Billie’s body was found in Charlotte, N.C. Sept. 29. The Mini Cooper may have been seen in the area of Griers Grove Road or near any potential travel route between Hampton Roads area and Charlotte, N.C., according to the release.

The possible travel routes include:

  • The travel corridor from Route 17 to I-64 through Rocky Mount, N.C. and Raleigh, N.C. to Charlotte, N.C.
  • The travel corridor from Route 58 to I-85 through Durham, N.C. and Greensboro, N.C. to Charlotte, N.C.
  • The travel corridor from Route 58 to I-95 through Raleigh, N.C. to I-85 to Charlotte, N.C.

The FBI is seeking possible video and dash-cam surveillance of the 2014 Mini Cooper traveling between Hampton Roads and Charlotte, N.C. between Sept. 18 and Sept. 23, the release said.

The FBI is also asking anyone with information related to Billie or her Mini Cooper to contact the FBI Norfolk Field Office, the release said.

The case is being investigated by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, Virginia Beach Police Department, Norfolk Police Department, and the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, the release said.

The FBI Norfolk Field Office can be reached at 757-455-0100, or by email at agnorfolkFO@fbi.gov, with the subject line “ASHANTI BILLIE.”

Previously, Sept. 30

Remains found Friday in Charlotte, N.C. have been identified as Ashanti Billie, 19, a Norfolk college student who was last seen entering the Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek Sept. 18, officials said.

The identification was made by the Mecklenburg County Medical Examiner’s Office and the Charlotte-Mecklenburg County Police Department, according to a Saturday news release from FBI spokeswoman Christina Pullen.

“It is with deep regret that I inform the community that Ashanti Billie has been located, deceased, in Charlotte, N.C.,” Martin Culbreth, Special Agent in Charge of the Norfolk Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, said in the news release. “I, along with the entire investigative team, offer our most sincere condolences to the Billie family, especially Ashanti’s parents Brandy and Tony. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.”

Officials said a man was cutting grass Friday morning at East Stonewall AME Zion Church in Charlotte, when he smelled a strange odor and then found Billie’s body, according to an Associated Press news wire.

Billie was last seen Sept. 18 driving a 2014 cream colored Mini Cooper with Maryland Tag 2CX-0575 reporting for work at a sandwich shop on base, according to a previous release from Pullen. Billie never arrived for work, nor did she attend her scheduled college classes.

There were also no known contacts with family or friends after she disappeared, Pullen said.

Billie’s cellphone was found Sept.18 in a dumpster near the corner of Tallyho Terrace and Azalea Garden Road in Norfolk. Her car was found Sept. 23 in the 9500 block of Lakeside Drive in the Ocean View section of Norfolk, according to Pullen.

“Our community should know that our work does not end here,” Culbreth said in the release. “Now our mission is to bring justice for Ashanti, and we will be relentless in our efforts to find who did this to her. We will not rest until the person who robbed Ashanti of her life, her promise and her future is held fully accountable under the law.”

Anyone with related information is urged to call the FBI Norfolk Field Office at (757) 455-0100.

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