Crews search for possible drowning victim in Pope County - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Crews search for possible drowning victim in Pope County

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UPDATED: AUGUST 11, 2017, 11:00 p.m.

POPE CO. -- The call came early Friday evening about a possible drowning at Bell Smith Springs in the Shawnee National Forest.

"We were able to recover, rural fire did, one male subject, in about 17 feet of water," said Pope County Sheriff Jerry Suits.

Sheriff Jerry Suits says search crews responded quickly to the scene at the lake and immediately went into action.

The scenic area includes bluffs trails and swimming. But apparently someone's outing Friday, ended in tragedy.

For several hours, search crews combed the lake as their rescue turned into a recovery operation.

Police cars came and went down the road leading to the lake with little word of any development.

Finally late Friday, word came of tragedy and a call to the Pope County coroner.

Sheriff Suits hopes this tragedy serves as a reminder that you can't be too careful around area lakes and recreation areas.

ORIGINAL STORY

POPE CO. -- Authorities in Pope County are searching for a possible drowning victim.

Pope County Sheriff Jerry Suits confirms a search and rescue unit has been called to the Bell Smith Springs area.

No other information has been released at this time.

We'll have more details as they become available.

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