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Dave Roepke, Published June 24 2010

Body found is likely missing woman’s

Search crews trolling the Red River on Wednesday found a body believed to be that of the Fargo woman reported missing Saturday.

Police said they’ve made an initial confirmation that the dead woman found on the Moorhead side of the river near the Convent Bridge at 52nd Avenue South is Kathleen Koper, 58, of Fargo.

Koper’s husband reported her missing at 11:30 a.m. Saturday. She had a history of depression, police said, and calls to the dispatch center Saturday described her as suicidal.

Lt. Pat Claus said police believe the body is Koper’s due to matching personal effects such as jewelry and physical characteristics.

Authorities won’t be certain of the identity of the body until it can be confirmed by the North Dakota State Medical Examiner in Bismarck, Claus said.

Police investigators have found nothing to indicate foul play, Claus said.

Search-and-rescue teams from Valley Water Rescue and the Fire Department were involved Wednesday in the search, which stretched over five days.

Police have said Koper’s car was found near 58th Avenue South, in the area near the Living Lab conservation park.

A bloodhound tracked her scent into the river, and footprints were found leading into the water.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Dave Roepke at (701) 241-5535