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Members of Valley Water Rescue and the Fargo Fire Department use cameras attached to poles as they search holes cut in the ice near the downtown dam on the Red River on Thursday morning as they search for Laura Williams-Jaffe, who has been missing since last week. (Dave Wallis/The Forum)

Police confirm body pulled from Red River is missing Fargo woman

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UPDATED 1:07 p.m.

FARGO - Fargo police said the body divers have pulled from the Red River is that of the missing Laura Williams-Jaffe.

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Divers entered the icy water about 12:10 p.m. today and pulled out a body wearing a white coat. Family members had said that Williams-Jaffe had been wearing a white coat the day she went missing.

Mike Williams, the brother of Williams-Jaffe, said about 11 a.m. searchers found what appeared to be a body underneath the ice on the North Dakota side of the river near the midtown dam.

Williams-Jaffe, 56, of Fargo, had been missing since last week. A bloodhound tracked her scent to the river's edge where police found shoe or boot prints that resembled the footwear that she would have been wearing.

Family members had said that Williams-Jaffe was a vulnerable adult who needed medications for anxiety and pain from a broken back suffered in an automobile crash in October.

About 11 a.m. today, searchers found something significant enough in the river to send in a diver. Authorities said Thursday they would only send a diver into the river if they thought they may have found Williams-Jaffe.

Valley Water Rescue volunteers began searching the river Thursday morning and wrapped up for the day about 5 p.m. After finding nothing Thursday, searchers resumed their search again about 8 a.m. this morning.

Members of the Cass and Clay sheriff's departments, and the Fargo fire and police departments were also on the scene, along with the Salvation Army.

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