An autopsy performed Friday showed a Sams Valley man found in Lost Creek Lake died from drowning. Charles Steven Schnell, 69, who had been camping on his boat, was reported missing Wednesday. A deputy found his body in the water on the north end of the lake hours later, but the boat was not there.
On Friday afternoon, JCSO marine patrol deputies located Schnell's boat underwater about a half-mile downstream from where Schnell's body was found. The Oregon State Marine Board's Boat Accident Reconstruction Team (BART) found evidence of a fire on board the boat.
BART, along with the Klamath County Sheriff's Office Sonar Underwater Investigative Team (SUIT), used sonar technology and divers to search below the surface for two days. Investigators will now work to recover the boat and to determine the cause of the fire.
BART consists of specially trained investigators from around the state, including JCSO. The team working on this incident includes deputies from Jackson, Multnomah, and Lane Counties, and a representative from the Marine Board. JCSO Search and Rescue members also assisted in the search and recovery.