Jholie Moussa (courtesy photo)

Fairfax County police detectives have identified a 17-year-old person of interest in the death of Jholie Moussa. He was arrested on Jan. 18 for a previous felony assault against Jholie and remains in custody. Detectives conducting interviews during the search for Jholie learned of a previously unreported crime in which she was the victim. The person in custody has been charged with felony assault. He has not been charged in her death and is not being named due to his age.

Jholie was reported missing by her family on Jan. 13 from the Alexandria area of Fairfax County after they had not seen or heard from her since the previous evening. The 16-year-old’s body was found in Woodlawn Park in the 4800 block of Manor Drive on Jan. 26 during one of the searches.

Major Richard Perez, Commander of FCPD's Major Crimes Bureau said today, “The department’s efforts towards resolving this case and bringing a measure of justice for Jholie and her family continues, and will be relentless. Every resource necessary has been, and will continue to be deployed.”

Jholie was last seen on Friday, Jan. 12 and reported missing the following evening by family members who had not seen or heard from her. FCPD patrol officers took the initial report Saturday evening and began the investigation. At that point, Jholie was entered in the National Crime Information Center database. They conducted interviews and searches both Saturday and Sunday and followed investigative leads. Friends’ homes and local hangouts were among the places officers searched early on.

Contact was also made with Old Dominion University Police after reports early on that Jholie was heading to a party at ODU in Norfolk. Detectives from the FCPD Major Crimes Bureau joined the investigation Monday. They obtained records from phones and social media accounts looking for clues. The next day, the FBI Washington Field Office and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children joined the effort.  That evening, Jholie was also upgraded in NCIC to an endangered missing person due to lack of contact with her family and friends via phone and social media for such a long time. This was something deemed out of the norm for Jholie.

Other agencies including Old Dominion University Police, Norfolk Police, and both the Philadelphia and Norfolk Field Offices of the FBI have also been assisting. The investigation will continue for as long as it takes for detectives to resolve this case and bring forth appropriate charges against the person(s) responsible for Jholie’s death.