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Missing University of New Hampshire student was strangled or suffocated, judge says

Jim Cole / AP

Seth Mazzaglia, bottom center, is seen during his video arraignment from the Strafford County jail in Dover, N.H. to the district court in Dover on Monday. Mazzaglia was charged with killing Elizabeth "Lizzi" Marriott, a 19-year-old University of New Hampshire student.

Updated at 6:45 p.m. ET: A missing 19-year-old University of New Hampshire student was either strangled or suffocated to death, a judge said Monday.

The New Hampshire judge's comments in Dover District Court came during Monday's arraignment of 29-year-old Seth Mazzaglia, who has been charged with second-degree murder in the slaying of college student Elizabeth "Lizzi" Marriott, the Boston Herald reported.

"You caused the death of Elizabeth Marriott," the judge said, according to the Herald. "The circumstances that manifested in an extreme indifference to human life by strangling her and/or suffocating her."

Mazzaglia, a martial arts instructor and actor, was charged Saturday, though Marriott's body has still not been found. The two reportedly met over the summer, while working at a Target store in Greenland, N.H., the Worcester Telegram & Gazette in Worcester, Mass., reported.

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The search for Marriott’s body could “take days,” New Hampshire Senior Assistant Attorney General Jane Young said at a press conference Monday afternoon, according to the Herald. Authorities are focusing their search near Peirce Island in Portsmouth, N.H.

AP via Dover (N.H.) Police Dept.

This photo provided by Dover police shows Seth Mazzaglia, who was charged with murder in this case.

"The search in that area may last several more days. They have not exhausted that search," Young said, according to the AP. "We have not discussed an end date. We have discussed continuing this until we find her."

Authorities in Maine and Massachusetts also have been notified in case her body washes up there, Young said, according to the AP.

Marriott, a marine biology major, was last heard from on Tuesday. She was from Westborough, Mass. She had been living with an aunt in Chester, N.H., and commuting to the university in Durham, N.H.

Mazzaglia is being held in jail without bail and is due back in court on Oct. 29, the Herald reported. He did not enter a plea, the newspaper added.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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