Body found in Adams Morgan alley during search for missing Va. college student

D.C. police are trying to determine if a body found in Adams Morgan is that of a missing college student from Reston, Va. FOX 5's Emily Miller has more.

- Family members and police say a body found Thursday is a Virginia Commonwealth University student from Reston, Virginia who went missing on Tuesday night after going out with his cousin in Adams Morgan.

Family and friends were searching for 19-year-old Paul McGuiness on Thursday attempting to retrace his steps.

“They had everyone in the world trying to help him and find him,” said McGuiness’ uncle, Oray Nicolai.

During the search, Nicolai said one of his friends located McGuiness' body in an alley in the area.

Nicolai’s son, Jack, was with his cousin on Tuesday at Madam’s Organ bar at around 1 a.m.

“My son was with him, thought he was coming out of the bathroom, but he never came out,” said McGuiness’ uncle. “Apparently, he went out the back stairs and fell. It’s what we think. They're checking it.”

Sources close to the investigation said the body was inside a locked stairwell in the alley.

“When the officer initially got the call, it was for an unconscious person,” said D.C. Police Commander Jeffery Carroll. “But when they got on the scene, they determined the person was deceased.”

McGuiness’ uncle talked to homicide detectives at the scene, but he told us that he believes his nephew's death was just a tragic accident.

His uncle told us that he doesn't know how McGuiness’ parents will survive this pain.

"It's the worst nightmare any parent could ever have,” said Nicolai.

He told us he was mostly upset for McGuiness’ father saying, "He's not going to be able to get through this” and that Paul was "a late in life child" and the center of his father's world.

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