UPDATE 6/16/19 — Soto’s family has provided a statement after his recovery that you can read here.
MENDOCINO Co., 7/15/19 — The body of Vincent Soto, who had been missing for over a month, was found today in Lake Mendocino, and delivered to his waiting family at the dock.
According to Lt. Shannon Barney of the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office, Soto’s remains were discovered floating in the lake near the control tower, at around 1:45 p.m., by a kayaker. Authorities promptly notified the family, many of whom had been holding vigil by the lake since Soto went missing on June 11. The body of Soto’s father, Carlos Soto, was found near a fishing boat that they had taken out on the lake. Both their wallets and cellphones were found in the boat, but the body of Vincent could not be located. Even so, everything points to a tragic boating accident and drowning as the cause of death of both men, and the MCSO says that “there is no indication of foul play at all.”
Deep water divers from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department had been scheduled to preform a search and possible retrieval of Soto’s body, after a diving robot had spotted a human sized object on the lake bed. (You can read about the details of that here.)
In preparation for the dive the flow of water out of the lake had been reduced, and Lt. Barney speculates that it’s possible that these changes in currents resulted in the surfacing of the body.
The body will be autopsied tomorrow, and the exact sequence of events remain speculative, since there were not witnesses.
Barney added, “We’d like to thank all the allied agencies that responded to assist us under mutual aid, there were quite a few of them.” He also noted that the searchers are volunteer and don’t do this work for pay, just to help.
Here is some of our previous coverage.