Jose Lara missing Putnam County Florida boy found dead in septic tank on his parent’s’ property. Authorities suspect no foul play, call incident tragic accident.
The body of a missing 1-year-old Florida boy has been discovered in a septic tank on his family’s Putnam County property in what authorities describe as a tragic accident.
The body of Jose Lara, who was reported missing from his Crescent City home Sunday, was found submerged in a septic tank Monday about 105 feet from the residence, Putnam County Sheriff H.D. DeLoach told reporters.
An investigation is ongoing, but there’s no evidence to indicate any foul play. Investigators believe the toddler stepped on the septic tank’s rotted cover made of plywood, dirt and weeds and fell in, DeLoach said.
‘After he fell in, it appears as though there was I guess some spring in the board itself and it almost came back in the same position that it would have been originally,’ the sheriff said.
The 22-month-old boy was last seen in his family’s backyard while playing with his sister the day before. His mother took the girl into the home and returned to find Jose gone, DeLoach said.
Recent immigrants from Honduras in search of better life
Investigators decided to drain the ground-level septic tank early Monday after dozens of deputies used canines and helicopters to search for the missing boy News4JAX reported.
‘It’s not an uncommon practice in a situation like this when there’s a child missing to search the septic tank as well,’ DeLoach said. ‘At that point it was unfortunately when we discovered the child’s body.’
The pastor of a church next to the boy’s home told WJXT his mother had recently moved to Florida from Honduras.
‘Horrible for this family,’ Pastor Albert Gutierrez told the station. ‘There’s no words.’
An autopsy will be conducted Tuesday to determine the boy’s cause of death, Putnam County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Allison Waters-Merritt said Tuesday.
The Sheriff’s Office reiterated there is no indication of foul play, but that the investigation is ongoing.