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Police: Missing student's body found

Official search had resumed Saturday after winter hiatus

Dru Sjodin disappeared November 22 from a shopping mall in Grand Forks, North Dakota.

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North Dakota

(CNN) -- A police reservist and a retired deputy found the body of college student Dru Sjodin, who went missing five months ago, police said Saturday.

Police confirmed that the remains have not been formally identified, but all indications point to the body being that of Sjodin, and her family has been informed.

Donald Osborne, the mayor of Crookston, Minnesota, told CNN that the body was found west of Crookston, near the Minakwa Country Club golf course.

Polk County Sheriff Mark LeTexier said: "The area where the body was found has been isolated and secured."

Investigators are looking for clues in the ditch where the body was found, he added.

Sjodin, 22, disappeared November 22 after leaving work at a Victoria's Secret store in a mall in Grand Forks, North Dakota. She was talking on her cell phone to her boyfriend as she walked to her car, and he said he heard the phone go dead.

Convicted sex offender Alfonso Rodriguez, 50, was charged December 1 with her kidnapping after authorities found a knife and blood matching Sjodin's DNA in his car. Rodriguez has pleaded not guilty to the kidnapping.

Later, a knife sheath was found near Sjodin's car in the mall parking lot. The sheath was sold at a local store, and only with the type of knife found in Rodriguez's car.

After Sjodin's disappearance, one of her shoes was found beneath a bridge along the bank of the Red Lake River. The bridge was on a highway heading into Crookston, Rodriguez's hometown, about 25 miles east of Grand Forks.

According to the affidavit filed for Rodriguez's arrest, Sjodin's call to her boyfriend ended at 5:04 p.m. with her saying, "OK, OK." At 7:42 p.m., an outgoing call from her cell phone was made to her boyfriend, but only static could be heard. The call lasted 55 seconds and was made at a rest stop near Crookston, the affidavit says.

Rodriguez was released from prison in May after serving 23 years for raping two women and attempting to rape another.

Official searches for Sjodin were suspended late last year because of poor weather, though family members continued the search on their own. Saturday was the first day that official searches had resumed.

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