The body of a woman pulled from the Rideau River yesterday is likely that of a Carleton University student who has been missing for six weeks.
Although Ottawa Police would not positively identify the dead woman yesterday, investigators confirmed that they had informed the family of Nadia Kajouji yesterday that there was a possibility a body found late yesterday morning could be that of the missing 18-year-old.
When contacted by Metro yesterday, Nadia’s brother, Marc Kajouji, said, “I just heard about it and have to let it settle.”
A kayaker spotted the body in the water near St. Paul University and Clegg Street at around 11:14 a.m., police said.
Acting Insp. John Maxwell said at the scene that the remains were that of a female, and that it’s “possible it’s a missing person.”
Maxwell would not speculate on how long the body had been in the water, but said that police do not suspect foul play.
“There were no visible signs of trauma,” said Maxwell.
Police, including the forensic identification unit and the water rescue unit, attended the scene, along with the Ottawa Fire Department and the coroner’s office, cordoning the end of Clegg Street with yellow police tape until about 3:30 p.m. yesterday.
A brown GMC Savana arrived on the scene at around 3 p.m. to remove the body, which had been on the ground covered by yellow tarp.
An autopsy has been ordered for the remains, Maxwell said.
“It can determine the cause of death, how the young lady met her end,” he said.
A public affairs and policy student at Carleton University, Kajouji was last seen on campus on March 9.
Since her disappearance, her friends and family conducted numerous searches for her throughout the city and her father, Mohamad Kajouji, came to Ottawa on several extended trips to conduct his own searches.
The president of Carleton University, Dr. Samy Mahmoud, released a statement following the discovery, saying, “After widespread collective efforts to find Nadia safe and sound, this is the saddest possible outcome for her family, friends and classmates.”