Santo, a freshman at Grand Valley State University, went missing in October when he was visiting friends at the Michigan State campus for Halloween.
“At approximately midnight on January 21st we were notified by Ryan Robison, a private investigator working with the Santo family, that while reviewing underwater video he saw something completely submerged in the water at (a) logjam that he strongly suspected was the body of Brendan Santo,” police wrote.
The logjam was located about 1.5 miles from where Santo was last seen, police previously told NewsNation affiliate WLNS-TV.
Robison notified officials in both Ingham and Oakland counties with details of his discovery, police said, and dive teams were deployed to the spot.
“Within the hour of notification, resources from MSU Police and Public Safety closed off the area around the logjam,” university police wrote in a statement. “Dive teams and multiple resources were in the water at first light to begin the recovery process.”
University police thanked both Robison and the Santo family for their “tireless dedication” during the investigation.
For months, Santo’s family returned to the Michigan State campus nearly every day after he went missing, retracing his steps in an attempt to find him. Santo’s father said he has walked hundreds of miles in the area during his search.
“We are deeply saddened by this tragic loss and our thoughts and prayers go out to the Santo family and all those who knew Brendan,” Michigan State Police said in a statement. “We ask that the public respect the family’s privacy.”
“At this time, our investigation has been reviewed by our local, state and federal partners and we still do not have any reason to believe that any foul play is involved and that is where the case stands right now,” Chris Rozman, an inspector with MSU Police and Public Safety, said when Santo first went missing. In Friday’s news release, police said they still believe this to be the case.