Homicide detectives suspect foul play in the death of 24-year-old Destynee Nekole Burkes of Gulfport, the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office announced Tuesday.
Deputies had responded to the La Quinta Inn, located at 4999 34th St. N, Monday afternoon after motel staff discovered a woman's body in one of the rooms.
The family of Burkes expressed shock over her death. The family told The Tampa Bay Times Tuesday that Burkes was active in the community and had a bright future.
Rawn Godwin said that his stepdaughter lived in Gulfport at the family's home. She had been a student at Boca Ciega High School, a debutante with the Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority and worked as a home health care aide for senior clients. She also coached cheerleading.
Homicide detectives are currently following up on several leads obtained from witness accounts and evidence collected at the crime scene.