Sheriff

Man's Body Found in Northern California Lake With Rope, Anchor Tied Around Legs

A man's body last month was fished out of Fallen Leaf Lake in El Dorado County with a rope, to which an anchor was attached, entwined around his legs, sheriff's officials said.

The man had been submerged under water for several years, and sheriff's officials hadn't known of the body's presence prior to October.

The body was found while Bruce's Legacy, an underwater search and recovery team from Wisconsin, scoured the lake for a 21-year-old man who went missing in the summer of 1996 and a woman who went missing in 2001, sheriff's officials said. Both people are believed to have drowned in the Northern California lake, but their bodies have never been recovered.

A woman's body was discovered on Aug. 29, 2017 while a team from Bruce's Legacy used a sonar and underwater rover to explore different spots where the bodies could have ended up. The body was similar to that of the missing woman, but DNA test results are not yet available, sheriff's officials said. There was no indication of foul play and the Sacramento County Coroner was responsible for an autopsy.

Detectives and Bruce's Legacy returned to Fallen Leaf Lake on Oct. 27, 2017 to look for the man who has been missing for 21 years. Several hours into their search, they found a body, but the man didn't match the description of the person who officials were originally looking for. 

"It was apparent that we had located a body that we had not known of, prior to his recovery," sheriff's officials said in a statment.

An autopsy and DNA tests will be performed on the body. A cause of death has not yet been determined and an ongoing investigation has not revealed whether the man's death is a homicide or suicide, according to sheriff's officials. 

The hunt for the man who went missing in 1996 also continues.

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