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Florida man escapes sinking car, only to drown after trying to get his things

The Golf Lakes Estates clubhouse, visible at far left, is next to a large pond set back from the 5000 block of Fifth Street East in Bradenton.
The Golf Lakes Estates clubhouse, visible at far left, is next to a large pond set back from the 5000 block of Fifth Street East in Bradenton. Bradenton Herald

A Florida man apparently drowned in a pond after escaping his sinking car only to go back and try to get his stuff inside, according to authorities.

The tragedy happened Monday evening at a Bradenton mobile home park.

The Manatee Sheriff’s Office dive team found the body of Michael McDonald of Devenpot near his submerged car, according to the Bradenton Herald.

"We don't know why or what caused him to drive into the pond," sheriff's office spokesman Dave Bristow told the Bradenton Herald. "We didn't find any witnesses."

Detectives think McDonald escaped, but went back to the car to retrieve his belongings.

McDonald spoke to his mother on his cellphone before drowning. He told her he had accidentally driven the car into the pond, Bristow said.

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