Body of Saguaro Lake cliff jumper recovered

Posted: Updated:
Saguaro Lake By Jennifer Thomas Saguaro Lake By Jennifer Thomas

SAGUARO LAKE, Ariz. -- The body of the man who jumped off a 300-foot cliff at Saguaro Lake last weekend and never resurfaced has been found.

The Maricopa County Sheriff's Office said Friday that Justin Otto Lee Anderson's body was recovered in the vicinity of Sandy Beach.

Anderson jumped from a cliff west of Sandy Beach at about 3 p.m. last Sunday. Witnesses said he hit the water on his back, according to Deputy Joaquin Enriquez with the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office.

A Department of Public Safety helicopter and later an MCSO helicopter conducted an aerial search of the area, but Anderson was not located.

An underwater search was conducted using a remotely operated vehicle (ROV). Enriquez said the search lasted for about an hour until water being released from Mormon Flat Dam was too strong to properly operate the vehicle.

At approximately 8 p.m., sheriff's search and recovery divers searched the water where Anderson was last seen. The dive mission was stopped for safety issues at about 9:15 p.m. Enriquez said the current and numerous underwater obstructions were too hazardous to continue.

The search continued Monday with crews using a drop camera that is better suited for the environment where Anderson is missing.

Saguaro Lake is located off state Route 87, about 40 miles east of downtown Phoenix in the Tonto National Forest.