The El Dorado County Sheriff's Office believe a body recovered from Fallen Leaf Lake could be that of a missing woman from 1996.
According to a press release from the sheriff’s office, two bodies were discovered in Fallen Leaf Lake this past August and October with the help of Bruce’s Legacy, an underwater search and recovery team from Wisconsin. While DNA of the bodies has not yet been confirmed, the sheriff’s office says the body of the woman was similar to that of a missing woman from 2001.
A woman was reported missing in 2001 after it was believed she drowned in the lake. Her body was also never recovered.
On Aug. 29, 2017, Bruce’s Legacy used Side Scan Sonar and an underwater rover in several areas where sheriff’s deputies believed the drowning victims could be located. During this search, a female victim was found. The body was removed and sent to the Sacramento County Coroner for an autopsy.
The sheriff’s office is awaiting the results of the DNA tests sent to The California Department of Justice Crime Lab for identification. Deputies believe foul play was not involved.
During another search on Oct. 27, a second body was recovered from the lake. Deputies initially hoped it to be the body of a 21-year-old man who was reported to have drowned while boating in 1996. This victim’s body was never recovered.
However, the body recovered had a rope tied around the lower portion of the man’s legs. A small anchor was tied to the end of that rope.
“It was apparent that we had located a body that we had not known of, prior to his recovery,” the press release stated, adding this is now an ongoing investigation and it is not known if this is a case of homicide or suicide.
Bruce’s Legacy continues to search for the 1996 missing man.