Police are "pretty sure" the woman's body found outside a Macon apartment is that of a 27-year-old missing law student. But by Friday afternoon, the remains had not been officially identified
Lauren Giddings, a recent graduate of Mercer University's Walter F. George School of Law, was last seen Saturday and was reported missing by a close friend early Thursday.
Thursday morning, investigators found a dismembered body near Giddings' apartment, but have not yet identified the remains.
“The condition of the body is making positive identification difficult,” Macon police Chief Mike Burns said in a statement Thursday.
In an email to a friend, Giddings reportedly said she was concerned for her safety and believed someone had tried to break into her apartment.
Giddings, a Maryland native and a graduate of Agnes Scott College, had been preparing to take the bar exam with some of her former classmates. Friday afternoon, the university community mourned her loss, with President William Underwood Dean Gary Simson releasing statements.
"Words cannot adequately express the grief and sorrow that the law school community feels in these tragic circumstances," Simson said. "Lauren graduated from the law school this past May after three years in which she distinguished herself in and out of the classroom."
At Mercer, Giddings served as president of the Federalist Society and participated in the Association of Women Law Students. Giddings played softball while studying at Agnes Scott.
Early Friday, one of Giddings' neighbors, Stephen Mark McDaniel, was arrested on a burglary charge, the Macon Telegraph reported. It was not immediately clear if McDaniel was a suspect in the woman's disappearance.
-- The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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