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Kori Gauthier Missing: Everything We Know About LSU Student’s Disappearance, Search

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Kori Gauthier, a freshman at Louisiana State University (LSU), is still missing as authorities have continued to search for any clues related to her disappearance.

The investigation:

On April 10, LSU issued an update to the investigation, writing on its Twitter page: “We want to assure the LSU community that the search for missing LSU student Kori Gauthier continues in cooperation with law enforcement officials and volunteers throughout the region.”

We want to assure the LSU community that the search for missing LSU student Kori Gauthier continues in cooperation with law enforcement officials and volunteers throughout the region.

— LSU (@LSU) April 10, 2021

They also noted that LSU and Gauthier’s parents have been in communication with law enforcement officials and noted that information about the investigation was being kept private.

At about 9:15 p.m. local time on April 10, LSU provided another update on the investigation, writing on Twitter that “a K9 cadaver dog with Mercy Search & Rescue alerted twice in the same area on the river, which is 85-90 feet deep with conditions that were unsafe to deploy divers.”

“On Sunday, April 11, Mounted Patrol will be searching the levee in both directions from Farr Park, while EBRSO, LDWF, LSUPD and BRPD will continue boat searches, including with the latest available sonar technology,” LSU wrote in a subsequent tweet.

On Saturday, a K9 cadaver dog with Mercy Search & Rescue alerted twice in the same area on the river, which is 85-90 feet deep with conditions that were unsafe to deploy divers.

— LSU (@LSU) April 11, 2021

The update from LSU also noted that “based on evidence collected during the investigation thus far, law enforcement officials suspect that no criminal activity or foul play took place.”

The Cajun Navy, which is helping the LSU Police Department with its search, issued a similar update on April 10, stating that it has “volunteers on horseback, ATV’s, drones, boats, helicopters and on foot.”

“Today, over 300 volunteers were involved in the search,” the update posted to Facebook added.

On April 8, at around 10 p.m. local time, the Cajun Navy wrote on its Facebook page that it was halting its search for Gauthier until the morning and urged students and community members to help with the search.

The Cajun Navy also posted several videos on its Facebook page showing how it was conducting the search.

United Cajun Navy assisting in search for missing LSU student Kori.
#unitedcajunnavy #unitedisstrength

The LSU Police Department has also created a command center for anyone to provide information on Gauthier’s disappearance.

LSU directed The Liberty Buzz to its recent updates posted on Twitter after reaching out for comment.

The update provided by LSU came after the Baton Rouge Police Department first discovered Gauthier’s unoccupied vehicle.

How it happened:

According to the LSU Police Department, Gauthier was last seen on April 5. Police found her vehicle unoccupied “at the scene of an accident on the I-10 eastbound side of the Mississippi River Bridge in Baton Rouge.”

WAFB-9 News in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, reported that Gauthier’s family first reported her disappearance when she didn’t show up for work.

In a statement sent to WAFB-9, a spokesperson for the Baton Rouge Police Department wrote, “On April 7, 2020 shortly after midnight we responded to the Horace Wilkinson Bridge regarding a reported accident involving a stalled vehicle.”

“Upon arrival the officer observed the stalled vehicle was unoccupied. The officer acted quickly to have the vehicle removed from the roadway to prevent any other crashes. The registered owner of the unoccupied vehicle was not contacted, but this investigation remained ongoing,” the statement said.

The Liberty Buzz reached out to the Baton Rouge Police Department for comment.

WAFB-9 also reported that when officers arrived to the scene, they found Gauthier’s belongings in the car, including her wallet and cellphone.

Who is she?:

According to LSU, Gauthier is an 18-year-old resident of Opelousas, Louisiana. Gauthier is 5-foot-5 and weighs between 115 and 120 pounds, with dark brown hair and brown eyes. LSU also posted a photo of Gauthier to its Twitter page.

LSU Police has been investigating the disappearance of one of our students, freshman Kori Gauthier, and has been in close contact with her family. Anyone with information on Kori Gauthier is asked to contact LSU Police at (225) 578-3231. pic.twitter.com/jdg5R2NxZI

— LSU (@LSU) April 9, 2021

Family & community response:

Since her disappearance, Gauthier’s family and members of the Baton Rouge and LSU community have continued to help law enforcement officials with the search.

According to WAFB-9, Gauthier’s father, Levar, joined the search mission for his daughter on Friday and told the local news station that he has not eaten since Wednesday.

“I’ve maybe gotten four hours of sleep in the last couple of days and her mom hadn’t gotten that much, I’m sure. I get a cat nap here and there but I mean we won’t stop until we know something about my daughter,” he said. “I really appreciate the effort that LSU students have put in, Southern University students, friends from Opelousas, LaPlace, Texas, you know, the overwhelming support for my daughter.”

Gauthier’s family is also providing a reward of up to $10,000 for anyone that helps bring their daughter home.

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In addition to helping the family and police with the search, dozens of community members recently gathered in downtown Baton Rouge for a prayer service. The service was led by Pamela Ravare-Jones, the assistant chief administrative officer to Baton Rouge Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome.

“We are humbled at this representation of family, friends and community, who have come to stand with us in faith and hope and trust that our beloved Kori will be reunited with her family,” Ravare-Jones said, according to the Advocate.

The Liberty Buzz reached out to the LSU Police Department for comment but did not receive a response in time for publication.

A detail of the logo on the field of the LSU Tigers prior to a game against the Auburn Tigers at Tiger Stadium on October 22, 2011, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
Jamie Squire/Getty

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