The body of a popular Houston Instagram influencer has been found after she went missing over the holiday weekend.
No one had heard from 26-year-old Alexis Sharkey since Friday evening, and when she didn’t show up for a scheduled hangout with friends on Saturday, they began to get worried.
“She is attached to her phone. She is a social media queen. She is an influencer who works from her phone,” Tanya Ricardo told KHOU11 of her friend’s failure to respond to her texts.
Stacey Clark Robinault, Alexis’ mother, says she was alerted to her daughter’s possible disappearance on Saturday by the influencer’s husband, 49-year-old Tom Sharkey. She posted a desperate plea to Facebook the same day, in hopes of reaching anyone with information about her whereabouts.
But earlier that morning, police had already found Alexis’ body by the side of the road in West Houston, three miles from the apartment she shared with her husband.
“I mean, just threw her on the side of the road, naked, like garbage,” Tanya told KHOU11. “I just, I don’t get it. No one gets away with something like this. No one.”
While police say her body showed no visible signs of injury, an autopsy is pending to determine the cause of death. And Stacey has made it clear that she believes her daughter’s death wasn’t an accident.
“I do believe she was murdered,” she told ABC13. “From what I’ve been able to gather as well as a mother’s gut. I learned very young as a mom to trust my gut. It’s not let me down.”
Alexis had only been living in Houston since January, after moving down with her husband. But according to Tanya, the couple may have been calling it quits.
“Recently, she opened up to us about it and divorce was being filed,” she said. “She was a very private person. She didn’t share a lot about what was going on at home.”
Tom has shared his own posts mourning his wife’s death, referring to her as his “world.”
Alexis’ family and friends are now focused on finding out what exactly happened between Friday night and Saturday morning, and coming together to grieve.
“We’re very broken,” her mother said. “We’re very broken-hearted. It’s just painful for someone so bright and having so much to offer… just to be gone, to be snuffed out. I don’t know why. I don’t know why.”
A memorial has been scheduled to honor Alexis’ memory on Dec. 3 at Houston’s Buffalo Bayou Park.
Update 2:09pm CT, Jan. 19: The Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences revealed on Tuesday that Sharkey died by strangulation, according to Click2Houston. Her death has been ruled a homicide, and no one has been charged in the case.
Today’s top stories
|‘Fill her up’: Bartender gives woman a glass of water when the man she’s with orders tequila shot
|‘I don’t think my store has even sold one’: Whataburger employees take picture with first customer who bought a burger box
|‘It was a template used by anyone in the company’: Travel agent’s ‘condescending’ out-of-office email reply sparks debate
|Sign up to receive the Daily Dot’s Internet Insider newsletter for urgent news from the frontline of online.