Body found during search for missing San Diego woman

National City police are investigating whether a body found near the Riverside County line on Thursday is that of a 30-year-old San Diego woman reported missing last week.

Officers were searching for Alexandria Nicole Smith around Pechenga Resort and Casino in Riverside County and Pala Casino Resort and Spa in northern San Diego County when they learned about the body.

“We had leads that she frequented casinos,” National City police Lt. Graham Young said Friday.

He said detectives visited every casino in San Diego County, looking at security video for her or her car. “We’re tracking down every lead possible,” he said.

A driver on a dirt road in a wooded area near Pala and Pala Temecula roads saw a body under a blanket and notified authorities, Young said.

The San Diego County Medical Examiner’s Office will identify the woman’s body and the cause of death. Young said the body was clothed and partly decomposed.

Smith was last seen driving away from her home in the College Area about 11 p.m. on Oct. 2. Her mother believed she was headed for a party in National City, police said. Smith was living with her mother and young daughter.

When Smith didn’t return home, her mother called National City police to report her missing.

Smith’s cellphone was found in a Vista 7-Eleven trash bin on Oct. 4 by someone rummaging for recyclables. That person charged up the phone, then called Smith’s mother and the Sheriff’s Department, Young said.

Smith’s car, a Toyota Corolla, was found in Temecula earlier this week, Young said. He did not want to give more details on how or where the car was located.

Police said Smith’s family told them she had suffered from depression and drug use.

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