NEWS RELEASE                                             

For Immediate Release
January 28, 2009
Contact: Michele Nicholson
Public Information Officer
  (850) 651-7420

DROWNING DETERMINED AS CAUSE OF DEATH

    The Okaloosa/Walton Medical Examiner's Office says a man whose body was discovered on an Okaloosa Island beach Wednesday morning died as a result of drowning.

     Investigators with the Okaloosa County Sheriff's Office report there are no indications of foul play, however the victim's identity is still unknown.

     The nude body of a slightly built white male washed ashore on the beach near the Best Western Motel and was first noticed by a man looking off a balcony.  The victim has brown hair with  a small balding patch on the back of his head. He wore a silver necklace, bracelet, and pinky ring. He is about 6-feet tall and weighs around 190 pounds.

      Investigators believe the drowning is connected to a report on Saturday around noon of a man seen entering the Gulf of Mexico on Okaloosa Island carrying his hat, shoes, a baseball cap, and jeans. An intensive search of the area was conducted at that time by the U-S Coast Guard, Okaloosa County Sheriff's Office, and Okaloosa Island Fire Department, but no one was seen.

     Anyone with information is asked to call the Okaloosa County Sheriff's Office at 850-651-7400 or Emerald Coast Crime Stoppers at 850-863-TIPS.

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