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Body found in Puerto Rican river amid search for Indiana art teacher

A 44-year-old art teacher from Indiana had been reported missing, but police may have just found her body.
Body found in Puerto Rican river amid search for Indiana art teacher
Posted at 6:32 PM, Oct 16, 2023

Puerto Rican police found a "lifeless" body floating upside down in a river, days after the department announced it was searching for a missing Indiana woman.

Amanda Webster was vacationing on the island from Indiana when she was reported missing Wednesday by the landlord of the lodgings where she was staying. The guest house manager had realized Webster left her belongings and a rented car on the property past the date she was supposed to leave, police said.

Puerto Rico Police Commissioner Antonio Lopez Figueroa ordered an "Ashanti Alert" on Friday, which asks citizens to help find the 44-year-old art teacher.

The U.S. Forest Service soon searched a wooded area where a citizen had previously spotted Webster, who was described as being 5-foot-6 and 147 lbs with blond hair and blue eyes.

But on Saturday, authorities said the same team carrying out the forest search may have found Webster's body in a rocky area of a river in the Rio Blanco neighborhood.

"A lifeless body, which could be that of a woman, was found this morning," police said in a post on Facebook. "At this stage it is not possible to identify the gender of the body or conclude if it shows signs of violence."

A group of officials had been working on extracting and identifying the body at the time of the post, but in a post on Facebook, Webster's mother appeared to confirm the identity of the body, days after sharing that her daughter had been missing in Puerto Rico.

"They just found Amanda's body in the river," the post read. "She had been underwater for some time."

Webster was an art teacher at Thompson Crossing Elementary School in Franklin Township, according to Scripps News Indianapolis. The school will be providing counseling services starting Monday, according to the district.

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