Body recovered from Manatee County pond, cops say


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A man’s body was found floating in a retention pond alongside a Publix in Manatee County on Friday morning.

At 10:44 a.m., Manatee County Sheriff’s Office deputies were called out to the pond next to the Publix supermarket at 2875 University Parkway, when someone reported seeing the body.

“We’re are not seeing anything that looks like foul play,” sheriff’s office spokesman Randy Warren said. “There no signs of trauma that we could see.”

The man appears to be middle-aged and has not been identified. The dive team had to be called to help carefully remove the body in attempt to preserve any evidence as investigators work to determine how the man died.

“He could have been there a day or two, maybe longer,” Warren said.

The medical examiner’s office was at the scene and investigated the man’s body, which was going to be transported to its facility for an autopsy. The autopsy will be done on Monday, when a fingerprint analysis could confirm the man’s identity.

“We think we know who it is,” Warren said. “We have been able to locate family and they helped us with things that were found at the scene.”

Jessica De Leon has been covering crime, courts and law enforcement for the Bradenton Herald since 2013. She has won numerous awards for her coverage including the Florida Press Club’s Lucy Morgan Award for In-Depth Reporting in 2016 for her coverage into the death of 11-year-old Janiya Thomas.