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Unidentified body found during search for missing Crown College student

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) - The Blount County sheriff said Monday afternoon that a body has been found in the search for a missing 20-year-old college student, but the remains have not yet been identified.

Sheriff James Berrong said the body was found in Georges Creek near a construction site in Louisville where missing Crown College student Blake Smith's car was found.

The body was taken to the Knox County Regional Forensic Center where an autopsy will be performed. 

Smith's car was found crashed into a deck near a construction site in Louisville. Smith's cell phone and other personal items were near the car. 

The Blount County Sheriff's Office is coordinating search efforts, using a drone and Knox County Sheriff Office's helicopter. K9 teams are also on standby.

His parents suspect foul play in his disappearance. According to an app they use to see where their children are, Jim Smith, Blake's father, says they saw him in the same place for hours on Saturday.

"We obviously believe there's foul play that's taken place, but we don't understand why or what. The car was found running in reverse with a cinder block on the gas pedal," he said.

His parents told WATE 6 On Your Side that they're worried, but have faith he'll be in heaven. They say they are also hoping and praying for the best. 

"Blake is that person you want as a good friend. He'll do anything for anybody. he's a very good young man."

Smith's aunt, Jill Williams, told ABC 33/40 in Birmingham that Smith, who is from Trussville, Alabama, left work at Weed Man Lawn Care around 2 p.m. Saturday and drove to his dorm. He posted a photo on Instagram from Admiral Farragut Park around 3 p.m. He never returned to his dorm.

Smith is 5-feet-10-inches tall and weighs 150 pounds. 

Crown College is a small Bible college and seminary. 

The Blount County and Knox County sheriff's offices are working together on the case. 

If anyone has information, they are urged to contact the Blount County Sheriff's Office at 865-273-5001 or 865-273-5200. 


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