Body Found In The Mississippi River Identified As Missing LSU Student Kori Gauthier

April 14, 2021

By Olivia Krueger

In St. John the Baptist Parish, a body in the Mississippi River was discovered and identified as missing Louisiana State University student, Kori Gautheir, she was 19.
On April 7 Gauthier went missing just before 1:00 a.m. She was reported missing when she didn't show up for class, work, and a doctor's appointment. Her abandoned car was found on the Mississippi River bridge and was struck by a motorist on the morning she disappeared, but this information was not communicated to her relatives by Baton Rouge police after responding to the crash and towing her car from the scene. Her family discovered this by tracking her cell phone which led them to a Baton Rouge salvage yard in the totaled vehicle.
LSU police were heading the missing person investigation with help from local law enforcement and community members. LSU officials stated last week that they didn't believe foul play or criminal activity was involved in her disappearance and they stuck to that claim after her body was found. Cadaver dogs searched the banks of the river and had alerted police twice to the area she was found, but that portion of the river is 85 - 90 feet deep and is too dangerous for divers to investigate.
LSU Police Chief Bart Thompson released a statement Wednesday saying, "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... This is a difficult conclusion for all of us, but we hope this will bring closure for the Gauthier family."
Gauthier's disappearance sent shockwaves through the communities in Baton Rouge and Opelousas where she grew up. Her father commented on the remarkable support everyone showed last weekend when the hunt to find Kori was still ongoing. After the discovery, many officials in the community offered their sympathies to the Gauthier's. Baton Rouge Mayor Sharon Weston Broome said, "Our entire community is heartbroken by the loss of this amazing young woman. I send my most heartfelt condolences to Kori's family and loved ones. Please keep them in your prayers during this time."