College student visiting MSU reported missing, police say

Mark Hicks
The Detroit News

Authorities searching for an 18-year-old college student who went missing at Michigan State University last weekend said Monday his car remains where it was parked.

Brendan Santo had been visiting friends Friday at the East Lansing campus and was last seen leaving Yakeley Hall shortly before midnight, MSU Police and Public Safety said in a statement.

His vehicle appeared to be in the last spot where it was parked, according to the release.

"It is possible he intended to walk approximately a half mile" to the area near the Brody complex, MSU police said. "Brendan was last seen walking on campus and there is no indication he left the East Lansing area."

Santo attends Grand Valley State University and is from Rochester Hills.

Brendan Santo

Michigan State Police and the Ingham County Sheriff’s Office were helping search with specialized units, authorities said Monday. The effort included searches on foot, by helicopter, drone and boat.

Police blocked off part of a parking lot near the Red Cedar River on Monday. Diving equipment could be seen.

Investigators have also interviewed those who last had contact or spoke with the student. They reviewed surveillance cameras and checked cellular, smartphone and GPS data. 

Friends from Metro Detroit organized a car pool to travel to MSU and join the search.

“Please pray even if you usually don’t pray,” said Michael Alter, whose son played hockey with Santo in the area.

Brendan Santo was last seen late Friday, Oct. 29.

Santo is described as 5-foot-10, 160 pounds, last seen wearing gray sweatpants, a black T-shirt, a black baseball hat and white Converse high-top shoes.

Anyone with information is asked to contact MSU police detectives at (517) 388-6291 or

The Associated Press contributed to this report.