A 16-year-old boy was arrested Thursday for allegedly fatally stabbing a 17-year-old friend whose body was found in the riverbed of the San Gabriel River near South El Monte.

The body of the victim — identified by the coroner’s office as Jeremy Sanchez of South El Monte — was found about 4 p.m. Wednesday near Parkway Drive and Thienes Avenue in the Avocado Heights area, according to the sheriff’s department.

On Thursday morning, sheriff’s investigators arrested a 16-year-old boy who they said was a friend of Sanchez after serving a warrant at the suspect’s home. The suspect, whose name was withheld, was booked on suspicion of murder and was being held at Los Padrinos Juvenile Detention Center, according to the sheriff’s department.

The murder weapon has not been recovered.

Sanchez was a student at South El Monte High School. Extra counselors were on hand at the campus Thursday.

Sheriff’s Lt. John Corina said the boy’s father had reported him missing and had gone looking for him after he didn’t show up for school Wednesday. The boy’s friends also searched for him, and they were the ones who found the body, authorities said.

Sanchez played on the school’s football team and was a member of the wrestling and baseball teams.

A friend, Briana Amigon, established a GoFundMe page to support the family.

“Jeremy Sanchez was a loving young man who was outgoing and full of energy,” she wrote on the page. “He loved playing sports. He was on the varsity football team and also on the wrestling team. We have no words to describe the grief that their family is experiencing right now, and many friends and family have asked how they can help at this difficult time.”

The page is at www.gofundme.com/in-loving-memory-of-jeremy-sanchez.

Anyone with information on the case was urged to call the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau at (323) 890-5500.

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