updated 11:51 PM UTC, Dec 4, 2016

Two Teenage Friends Found Dead A Hundred Feet Apart

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( 4UMF NEWS ) Two Teenage Friends Found Dead A Hundred Feet Apart:

Authorities vowed Wednesday to “catch this depraved predator” after two teenage girls, one 16, the other on the eve of her 16th birthday, were found brutally slain a few hundred feet from each other less than 24 hours apart.

Nisa Mickens, 15, and her best friend, Kayla Cuevas, had been hanging out Tuesday near Stahley Street in Brentwood when they were apparently attacked, authorities say. Mickens’ body was found in the street that night, brutally beaten with at least 10 injuries, including cuts and head trauma.

She was pronounced dead at the scene. Her friend, Cuevas, was reported missing. Twenty hours later, a body matching Cuevas’ description was found in the woods a few hundred feet from where Mickens was discovered. A neighbor had called 911 to report the body near a tree in their yard.

The medical examiner has not yet released a cause of death for Cuevas, but officials determined Mickens died of a homicidal assault.

Suffolk County Police Det. Lt. Kevin Beyrer said investigators believe the two killings are connected, though they’re not offering a possible motive. They say the deaths may be gang-related.

“This brutal attack of a teenager will not stand in Suffolk County,” Police Commissioner Tim Sini said Wednesday. “We’re going to catch this depraved perpetrator.”

As thunder clapped, Alvarado said, “She’s crying over us. She’s washing everyone’s sins away.”

On what would have been Mickens’ birthday, her parents left the gifts she’d asked for, a basketball and balloons, on the spot where her body was found.

On Thursday, the principal at Brentwood High School, which both girls attended, held a moment of silence for the slain teenagers. A few classmates stopped walking and held hands. Many described the mood of the student body as sad and in a state of disbelief.

Anyone with information on the girls’ deaths should call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS.

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