Preeya Sheth was a bright and cheerful student at Phillips Exeter Academy, a prestigious boarding school in New Hampshire. She was a member of the class of 2016 and had a promising future ahead of her. However, her life was cut short in a horrific incident that shocked the entire Exeter community and the nation.
What Happened to Preeya Sheth?
Preeya Sheth was kidnapped and murdered by a man she met on Tinder, a popular dating app. The man, identified as Dushyant Sharma, was a 28-year-old businessman from Jaipur, India. He had lied to Preeya about his identity and wealth, claiming to be a millionaire from Delhi named Vivan Kohli.
Preeya, who was 27 at the time, had also lied to Dushyant about her intentions. She was not looking for a romantic relationship, but for a victim to extort money from. She had a criminal history of prostitution, ATM loot, false rape threats, and honey traps.
The two met in person in May 2018, after three months of chatting on the app. Preeya invited Dushyant to her rented accommodation, where she and her two accomplices, Dikshant Kamra and Lakshya Walia, kidnapped him. They demanded a ransom of Rs 10 lakh (about $13,500) from his family, who did not know that he was already dead.
The kidnappers stabbed Dushyant multiple times and smothered him with a pillow. They then cut his body into pieces and stuffed them into a suitcase. They dumped the suitcase on the Delhi-Jaipur highway, where it was discovered by the police. The police arrested the trio within 10 hours of finding the body.
How Did the Exeter Community React?
Preeya Sheth’s death was a devastating blow to the Exeter community, who remembered her as a beloved and talented student.
Preeya was involved in many activities on campus, such as the Model United Nations, the Debate Society, the Math Club, and the Chess Club. She was also a passionate writer and poet, who had won several awards for her work. She had a keen interest in science and technology, and had participated in several research projects and competitions.
Preeya’s friends and teachers described her as a kind, generous, and optimistic person, who always had a smile on her face. She was known for her curiosity, creativity, and courage. She had a strong sense of justice and empathy, and was always willing to help others. She had a diverse and inclusive circle of friends, who cherished her friendship and support.
Preeya’s death was mourned by the entire Exeter community, who held a memorial service for her in the chapel. They also created a tribute page on the school’s website, where they shared their memories and condolences. They expressed their shock and sadness at the loss of such a bright and beautiful soul, who had touched so many lives.
What Was the Outcome of the Case?
The case of Preeya Sheth’s murder was one of the most sensational and gruesome crimes in India in recent years. It drew attention to the dangers of online dating, the prevalence of cybercrime, and the need for better security and verification measures on dating apps.
The case also raised questions about the justice system and the bail laws in India, as Preeya and her accomplices had been arrested several times before for similar crimes, but had managed to get out on bail. They had also confessed to their crime in a chilling video interview, where they showed no remorse or regret.
In November 2023, a court in Jaipur sentenced Preeya, Dikshant, and Lakshya to life imprisonment for the murder of Dushyant. The judge said that the prosecution had presented adequate evidence to prove their guilt, and that they had committed a heinous and barbaric crime.
The verdict was welcomed by Dushyant’s family, who had been waiting for justice for five years. They said that they were relieved that the killers had been punished, but that nothing could bring back their son. They also said that they hoped that the case would serve as a warning to others who use dating apps, and that they would be more careful and cautious.