Florida Keys

Man wearing dog life jacket found dead in the ocean

A man found dead floating in Niles Channel Monday was wearing a life jacket designed for dogs.
A man found dead floating in Niles Channel Monday was wearing a life jacket designed for dogs.

A man’s body covered in a life jacket made for a dog was found floating on the ocean side of Ramrod Key.

The man, who Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officers hadn’t named Tuesday, was spotted floating face-down on Monday by a passing boater about 50 feet from shore. The body was about 15 feet away from an overturned dinghy in Niles Channel, said FWC Officer Robert Dube.

“He was wearing a dog life jacket,” Dube said. “There was no apparent sign of foul play.”

The man was in his early 70s and is not being named until police are able to locate and notify his relatives. Dube said he was living on a friend’s boat moored in Niles Channel, around mile marker 33. The dinghy had no engine and Dube said the man may have been rowing to shore to go to work.

FWC officers turned the man’s body over to the county medical examiner, who will determine the cause of death and conduct a toxicology test, Dube said.

David Goodhue: 305-440-3204

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