A skeleton stuck in what appears to be a barrel was discovered at a Nevada lake on Sunday as the area faces a serious drought.
The body, found in a barrel that had washed up onto the muddy shore of Lake Mead, was found by a group of boaters Sunday afternoon around Hemenway Harbor. According to authorities, it is believed that the body dates back to the 1980s, but it has not yet been disclosed how the body ended up in the barrel or in the lake.
“It’s going to be a very difficult case,” Las Vegas Metro police homicide Lt. Ray Spencer told the 8 News Now investigation team. “I would say there is a very good chance as the water level drops that we are going to find additional human remains.”
One twitter posted the photos of the barrel and said, “With the lake level dropping at Lake Mead, bodies are showing up….this could get interesting…”
With the lake level dropping at Lake Mead, bodies are showing up….this could get interesting….🤔 pic.twitter.com/Yw02aWgrBJ
— Troy Warren (@chvyrod) May 2, 2022
Spencer added again that he believed that there would be more bodies found in the lake.
“I think anybody can understand there are probably more bodies that have been dumped in Lake Mead, it’s just a matter of, are we able to recover those?” he asked.
The body has not yet been identified, but Clark County Coroner’s Office was still investigating — and Spencer noted that items with the body seemed to indicate that the body dated back to the 1980s.
The whole area has been experiencing an extensive drought with the levels of Lake Mead fallen under 1,056 feet, just under 200 feet below the lake’s high.
The body was discovered by several people out enjoying the lake on Sunday afternoon.
“We were docking our boat to go home and heard a woman scream,” Shawna Hollister, who was at the lake, said. “My husband walked over and found the body. His shirt and belt were the only thing we could see over his decomposing bones.”
Lake Mead, a byproduct of the Hoover Dam is key to the water infrastructure of the region. Its system, which includes other lakes, provides water to several states including Nevada, Arizona, California, Colorado, and others.
“Lake Mead, America’s largest reservoir, was created by the construction of the Hoover Dam. With more than 750 miles of shoreline, you can enjoy a day at the beach, take a boat out and disappear for hours or nestle into a cove to try to catch a big one,” the National Park Service explains on its website.
After the discovery of the body, the portion of lake was cordoned off while investigators look into the appearance of the skeleton.