"She was the brightest light and always had a smile on her face," Ally Kostial's friend wrote on Facebook

By Chris Harris
July 23, 2019 04:28 PM
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Credit: Facebook

A 22-year-old man was arrested Monday afternoon on accusations he murdered 21-year-old University of Mississippi student Alexandria “Ally” Kostial.

An Oxford Police source confirms that Brandon Theesfeld — who was booked into the Lafayette County Jail shortly before 4 p.m. on Monday — is suspected of fatally shooting Kostial.

Rod Guajardo, Associate Director of Strategic Communications at the University of Mississippi, tells PEOPLE, “Brandon Theesfeld was a student in the School of Business Administration and has been suspended from the university.”

Kostial’s remains were recovered from Harmontown, Mississippi, by officers on routine patrol.

Her body was found at around 10:30 a.m. on Saturday — shot eight times, according to investigators.

WLBT reports Kostial was last seen Friday evening, stopping at the door of a bar but not entering the establishment.

Kostial, who was from St. Louis, Missouri, was working on a bachelor’s degree in marketing in the School of Business Administration at the University of Mississippi.

Her father, Keith Kostial, opened up about the tragedy in a Sunday Facebook post.

“Yesterday, Saturday afternoon, we were visited by the Sunset Hills MO Police who communicated to us that our beautiful dear Alexandria (Ally) Kostial was the victim of a homicide,” the post reads. “As of now, it is believed the crime happened in Lafayette County, MS.”

Kostial was a 2016 graduate of Lindbergh High School in St. Louis.

Ally Kostial
| Credit: Facebook

A close friend and sorority sister, Kassidy Desnoyer, penned a tribute to Kostial on Facebook.

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“I’m so grateful that I got to know Ally throughout high school and we shared so many memorable experiences at Ole Miss together,” Desnoyer wrote. “From road tripping down to Oxford to being my Alpha Phi sister I will cherish all the memories we had together. She was the brightest light and always had a smile on her face. She truly was a ray of sunshine. My heart and condolences go out to the Kostial family.”

Theesfeld has yet to appear in court and it was unclear Tuesday if he is represented by an attorney who could speak on his behalf.