MILLERSVILLE, Pa. (WHTM) — Millersville University reported Saturday the first-year student who went missing this week was found dead near campus.
Police say Matthew Mindler of Hellertown, Pa., was reported missing late Wednesday night after he didn’t come back to his room or return calls from his family. He was last seen walking from his residence hall, West Villages, toward the Centennial Dr. parking lot area around 8 p.m. on Tuesday.
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Officials say the search started on Thursday after being reported. University police and law enforcement from the area assisted with the search.
Mindler was found dead Saturday morning in Manor Township near campus in the area of Shenks Lane and Crossland Path. His body was transported to the Lancaster County Forensic Center for further investigation.
University Police say at this point it’s not being treated as a criminal investigation, only calling it an “unattended death.”
On Thursday, the Lancaster County Hazmat Team searched from the sky using a drone, and Friday the Middle Creek search and rescue team did a grid search of 200 acres.
“He had actually posted one or two social media pictures of himself in a positive way in the wooded area near campus,” MU Police Chief Pete Anders said.
Saturday morning, joined by the Pa. Christian Aid Ministries Search and Rescue Team, they finally found him.
“There’s actually a sidewalk that goes from campus down to Crossgates Golf Course and it’s actually a beautifully wooded area that butts our campus. It’s about I’d say 150 to 200 yards of a walk,” Anders said. “There was no indication of an immediate danger, however, we felt that it was unusual that he had not come back that evening and also had not responded to his mother’s communications.”
On Monday, the Lancaster County Coroner’s Office ruled the incident a death by suicide.
“Our thoughts and prayers and comfort are extended to all who knew him,” Millersville President Dr. Daniel Wubah said.
Mindler was also a child actor, starring in an episode of the soap opera “As The World Turns” and also alongside actor Paul Rudd in the 2011 movie “Our Idiot Brother.” According to his IMDB, he hasn’t acted since 2016.
Millersville is offering support for the campus community using their counseling center, campus ministries and any other health services.