Sunday, April 12, 2009

Strange Exits: Man fought off by 81-year-old woman, drowns in Mirror Lake

A diver searches for a man who jumped into Mirror Lake on Friday. Witnesses say the man appeared intoxicated, and a woman said he had assaulted her moments earlier. His body was later found.The man wanted a dollar. When the 81-year-old woman — on her way to a downtown bank — said no he put her in a headlock and tried to take her down. But she fought back. "He was beating me. I was kicking. I was screaming " said Joyce Trace. "I m not a sissy." The man fled. Moments later he was at the edge of Mirror Lake. "You guys didn t see me he told a group of people hanging out nearby and jumped. The water about 7 feet deep with an additional 4-foot layer of silt and sand below it quickly swallowed him. He vanished under the surface. About 90 minutes later a diver from St. Petersburg Fire and Rescue s marine unit pulled his body from the lake. "He went into the water and never came back up " said fire rescue Capt. Bernard Williams. Police did not release the man s identity Friday night because they had not yet found or notified his family. Witnesses said he was homeless and often hung out at the downtown park which sits behind a library. "He didn t want the police to chase him " said Amber Jachimski who was part of the group the man talked to before he jumped in the lake. Jachimski and other witnesses said the man appeared intoxicated Friday and stumbled down the side of an embankment before he jumped. "He was drunk " said William "Pop" Shumate who said he was friends with the man."

via Man is fought off by 81-year-old woman, runs off and drowns in Mirror Lake - St. Petersburg Times.

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