The body that was found in the Mississippi River earlier this week has been identified as that of missing LSU student Kori Gauthier.
NBC News reports that the news was confirmed by LSU chief of police Bart Thompson on Wednesday. Investigators have deduced no criminal activity or foul play is suspected, with video footage and cellphone tracking among the evidence that would suggest as much. He added there’s also “other evidence we shared with Kori’s parents that we are not liberty to disclose publicly out of respect for their privacy.”
#BREAKING Officials in St. John the Baptist Parish has been identified the body recovered in Reserve as #KoriGauthier. Please continue to pray & uplift her family during this time. pic.twitter.com/6VZOxqM28P
— Kourtney Williams (@kwilliamstv) April 14, 2021
The 18-year-old LSU freshman was last seen on April 6, her family said. Her car was discovered abandoned on a Mississippi River bridge in Baton Rouge the following day. Police indicated there was an accident on the bridge involving what appeared to be a stalled vehicle.
“Since Kori was first reported missing, the LSU Police Department, Baton Rouge Police Department and other law enforcement agencies and volunteers have taken exhaustive measures to locate her and, in the process, to determine what led to her disappearance,” continued chief of police Bart Thompson. “This is a difficult conclusion for all of us, but we hope this will bring closure for the Gauthier family.”
Authorities began searching for Gauthier on horseback and in boats after she was reported missing, and on Friday over 300 volunteers joined the search. That same night, LSU students held a vigil for her. After the news broke, her uncle Spencer shared a touching video message and thanked everyone for their support and efforts to help find his niece.
Some beautiful words from Kori Gauthier’s uncle Spencer. May her beautiful soul Rest In Peace, Filled with joy now that her family have their closure even if it wasn’t the result we all wanted. #KoriGauthier pic.twitter.com/rKhdUJXN9N
— hi (@ceshiesty_) April 14, 2021
“Our entire community is heartbroken by the loss of this amazing young woman,” said Baton Rouge Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome in a statement. “I send my most heartfelt condolences to Kori’s family and loved ones. Please keep them in your prayers during this time.”
Sending our condolences to the Gauthier family.