Miami Beach

Floating body off Miami Beach not identified

A Miami Beach man was roused from his sleep by police officers in his yard and a spotlight from a police boat behind his Di Lido Island home.

The police squad had been alerted to a body spotted in Biscayne Bay by one of Robert Lanster’s neighbors several hours earlier. Sunday’s search led them to Lanster’s bay-side dock, where wedged between pilings and his Scarab speedboat was a bloated, floating body.

Two days later, Miami Beach police have still not been able to identify the man. They say they don’t believe he’s homeless because he was clean-shaven, had clean fingernails, and was well-dressed, with $20 in a pocket. The body’s condition, though, was too poor to use facial features for identification purposes.

The man is believed to be in his mid-50s, and about five feet eight inches tall. His body was taken to the morgue, but the Miami-Dade County medical examiner has not been able to identify it through fingerprints. Now, the examiner will try to use dental records or other forensics in the hope of identifying the body.

Miami Beach police Detective Vivian Thayer said the department had not received any missing-persons reports or alerts from hospitals that could possibly match up with the body.

Investigators asked anyone with information to call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-8477 or Miami Beach police at 305-673-7776.

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