18-year-old woman fatally shot in hotel room on New Year’s Day — DC’s first homicide of 2024

D.C. police began investigating what could be the first shooting of 2024 at the Embassy Suites Hotel located across from the Friendship Heights Metro Station on Jan. 1, 2024. (WTOP/Ivy Lyons)

An 18-year-old Maryland woman who was shot at a New Year’s party inside a Northwest D.C. hotel room shortly after midnight on Monday appears to be the District’s first homicide victim of 2024.

Police identified the woman as Ashlei Hinds, of Clinton, Maryland.

Her death comes as the District ended 2023 with its highest number of killings in more than two decades.

D.C. police said authorities were called to the hotel in Friendship Heights at around 1:20 a.m. for the reported shooting. The wounded woman was found inside a hotel room on the seventh floor, according to D.C. Fire and EMS.

There is no word on a possible suspect. Police are offering a $25,000 reward for information leading to an arrest and conviction. Anyone with information is asked to call police at (202) 727-9099. Anonymous tips can be texted to 50411 .

D.C. Ward 3 Council member Matt Frumin said in a social media post the “young woman” was shot by another party attendee at the Embassy Suites Hotel on Military Road.

In a statement, hotel spokeswoman Theresa King confirmed “an incident occurred at the Embassy Suites Chevy Chase Pavilion” and that the hotel is cooperating with authorities.

“The well-being, safety and security of our guests and team members are of paramount importance, and we continue to make every effort to ensure all practices are in line with strict safety and security standards,” the statement said.

Shortly after the shooting at the hotel, police said another woman was wounded in the 1300 block of H Street in Northeast D.C. at around 2 a.m.

Officials have not provided an update on the woman’s condition in the latter shooting.

D.C. ended 2023 with 272 homicides — the highest number in more than two decades — and a 35% increase from the 201 killings in 2022.

In a statement about the shooting at the hotel, Frumin said he’s hosting a public safety forum on Jan. 17 at the Cleveland Park Library with D.C. leaders as part of efforts to address the city’s “crime crisis.”

“We face an epidemic of gun violence in our city that impacts every resident regardless of age, income, or Ward, and we must work together across government to empower public safety agencies to stem the tide of violence,” Frumin said.

WTOP’s Jack Moore contributed to this report. 

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Jessica Kronzer

Jessica Kronzer graduated from James Madison University in May 2021 after studying media and politics. She enjoys covering politics, advocacy and compelling human-interest stories.

Ivy Lyons

Ivy Lyons is a digital journalist for WTOP.com. Since 2018, they have worked on Capitol Hill, at NBC News in Washington, and with WJLA in Washington.

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