Second Update on teen drowning from the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office:
The deputies were assigned to patrol the area for any illegal activity such as: bridge jumping, illegal use of alcohol in the park or on the river, monitoring the safe operation of kayaks, canoes and motorized vessels, etc., when they observed a male attempting to climb to the top of the bridge to jump off.
Suddenly, the deputies were notified by individuals on the beach at Rogers Park of a teen who had entered the water and had not resurfaced (separate incident – not the same individual deputies observed climbing upon arrival). Witnesses told deputies that the 16-year-old male, identified as Jacob P. Sayers, had been playing in the water for most of the day with several family members.
Initially, it was believed that he (Sayers) had jumped from the bridge due to the fact that at least one witness was motioning toward the bridge and that another individual was climbing the bridge. This led first responders to believe that Sayers jumped from the bridge; however, Sayers did not jump from the bridge. It is unclear how Sayers entered the water.
Sayers and the others were playing with a ball. Sayers went into the water after the ball, swam for a bit, went under the water for a short time then resurfaced onto a small sandbar and appeared to be catching his breath. Sayers then reentered the water continuing his efforts to retrieve the ball; however, he went under the water, not resurfacing until being observed by residents.
While family members and park patrons were searching for Sayers, residents on Circle Drive spotted him floating in the water. Sayers was pulled ashore approximately 100 yards from Rogers Park. Bystanders performed CPR until the arrival of Hernando County Fire/Rescue.
Jacob Sayers was transported to Oak Hill Hospital where he was pronounced deceased by physicians.
First UPDATE: Teen Injured After Jumping Off Bridge Near Rogers Park
The teen who was injured and lost consciousness Monday after jumping off the bridge at Rogers Park has died from his injuries.
At 3:26 p.m. Monday, Hernando County Fire Rescue responded to Rogers Park which is a public beach area on the Weeki Wachee River for a possible drowning. Reports are that a 16 year old boy was jumping from a bridge that crosses the Weeki Wachee River. After jumping from the bridge, the boy did not surface right away and bystanders found him unconscious about 100 yards down-river from the bridge. The bystanders, along with an off-duty ER nurse, pulled the boy from the water and began CPR.
When HCFR arrived onscene, they continued advanced life support and transferred the patient to Oak Hill Hospital. The patient was in critical condition upon arrival. No further details are available concerning the boys condition at this time.
Alex Lopez, with HCFR, stated that the boys name was being withheld pending notification of family.
We will update as more information becomes available.
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