SCOTTSDALE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) – The Scottsdale Police Department on Tuesday identified the man who died inside a pipe at the Eldorado Aquatic & Fitness Center in Scottsdale 31-year-old Ryan Kelly.
Officer Kevin Watts of the Scottsdale Police Department said an officer was on patrol about a quarter of a mile away from the Aquatic Center northeast of McDowell and Hayden roads when he heard what sounded like "muffled screams for help" shortly after midnight Monday. It took about an hour to find Kelly.
While officers did not know it at the time, the pipe where they eventually found Kelly was "acting almost like a megaphone." That made it extremely difficult for them to pinpoint his location.
First responders talked with Kelly, who was believed to be transient, for about an hour before he stopped answering them.
What started as a rescue shifted to a recovery at about 3 a.m.
Aerial video showed a crane lifting a pipe that's part of a water slide. Watts explained that the pipe was part of the slide's superstructure, which had to be dismantled.
It’s not clear what Kelly was doing at the Aquatic Center. Watts said he had to scale a fence to get into the locked facility and then climb the slide and lower himself into the tube.
"It wasn’t an easy feat," Watts said. "It took some work to get down in there."
It will be up to the Maricopa County Medical Examiner to determine how Kelly died.
The incident is under investigation.