Authorities are trying to determine whether a body found Saturday morning in a brushy area between Pleasanton and Sunol might be that of missing nursing student Michele Le.
The body was found near Pleasanton Sunol Road at Verona Road late Saturday morning, in a brushy area near a dirt road, according to Alameda County Sheriff's spokesman Sgt. J.D. Nelson.
The body was decomposed and the gender remains unknown at this point.
News reports indicate the body was found by a volunteer searching for Le's body, but Nelson could not confirm that. He indicated that Hayward police were notified of the body's discovery first, and that they in turn called in the Sheriff's Department since the area where it was found is in that agency's jurisdiction.
Nelson said the agencies would conduct a joint investigation until it is determined whether or not the body is Le.
Le, 26, a San Mateo resident, was last seen May 27 at Kaiser Hospital at 27303 Sleepy Hollow Ave. South, according to police. Le was at the hospital taking a class, which is part of a nursing course she was enrolled in with Samuel Merritt University in Oakland.
She told many classmates she was planning to drive to Reno after class. She left class during a break and didn't return, according to police.
Police found her car parked a few blocks from the hospital the next day, with bloodstains that were later found to be from Le.
A former friend, Giselle Esteban, 27, was arrested Sept. 7 on suspicion of murder.
Police said footage from security cameras at the Kaiser Permanente parking structure showed that Esteban was present around the time of Le's disappearance. Additionally, evidence found inside Le's car indicated that
Esteban had been in the vehicle.
Police also said cellphone records show from wireless tower activations that Le and Esteban traveled along the same path leaving the area just after Le's disappearance.
Police served a search warrant at Esteban's house on May 29 and found a pair of athletic shoes, one of which contained Le's DNA.