Teen drowns in Salt River

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Sheriff's deputies recovered the body of a 17-year-old boy who drowned in the lower Salt River. By Jennifer Thomas Sheriff's deputies recovered the body of a 17-year-old boy who drowned in the lower Salt River. By Jennifer Thomas

PHOENIX – Maricopa County lake patrol deputies recovered the body of a 17-year-old boy from the Lower Salt River Tuesday afternoon.

Mike Espinoza was swimming downstream from the Blue Point Bridge with four friends when he got caught in the current and pulled to the middle of the river, according to the sheriff's office.

The teen began struggling to stay above the surface of the water and tried swimming toward his friends. He went under and did not resurface.

He was last seen in the area where the river curves west toward Blue Rock. Witnesses searched the area for approximately 25 minutes before the incident was reported to MCSO.

Deputies recovered his body a short time later.

Personnel from the Medical Examiner's Office responded to the scene and conducted an external exam. No obvious signs of trauma were found. The ME's office will conduct a further investigation.