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Suspect arrested in connection with death of Ole Miss student Ally Kostial

Police have arrested a 22-year-old man in connection with the death of University of Mississippi student Ally Kostial.
/ Source: TODAY

Police have arrested a man in connection with the death of University of Mississippi student Ally Kostial, whose body was found by authorities in a wooded area 20 miles from campus over the weekend.

Law enforcement sources told NBC affiliate WLBT on Tuesday that Brandon Theesfeld, 22, was booked into the Lafayette County Jail at 3:43 p.m. Monday.

The Texas man was scheduled to appear in court on Tuesday, the station said.

Investigators have called the death of Kostial, 21, a case of "foul play." Her body was found with eight gunshot wounds, authorities told WLBT.

A deputy on patrol near a lake about 20 miles from campus found her body on Saturday morning, the Lafayette County Sheriff's Department said in a statement.

She was last seen Friday night outside a bar near the University of Mississippi, where she had been taking summer classes. She didn't go inside the bar, but instead went home around midnight before leaving the house again, authorities close to the case told WLBT.

Kostial's father confirmed the tragic news about her death in a Facebook post on Sunday.

"Yesterday, Saturday afternoon, we were visited by the Sunset Hills MO Police who communicated to us that our beautiful dear Alexandria (Ally) Kostial was the victim of a homicide,'' Keith Kostial wrote. "She had been attending summer school and teaching fitness classes at University of Mississippi, (Ole Miss) in Oxford, Mississippi. She was a 2016 Lindbergh High School graduate. She was only 21."

"We are truly saddened,'' University of Mississippi interim Chancellor Larry Sparks said in a statement to TODAY. "Ally was a valued member of our campus community."

Kostial's friends are also reeling from the news and posting tributes on social media.

"It's just hard for me because all I can think about is when I see her face is what she went through, is what she was thinking, what she was saying,'' friend Anna Pasco said on TODAY Tuesday. "It's really, really hard."