17-year-old drowns in Fairfield lake

FAIRFIELD - A 17-year-old Bridgeport boy died while swimming in Fairfield's Samp Mortar Lake early Tuesday morning.

Police say they received a call at approximately 1:30 a.m. that Manuel Matias was missing. Once dispatched to the scene, firefighters scoured the waters with boats and searchlights while divers searched under water. The boy's body was found at approximately 2:15 a.m. and pulled from the lake. He was unresponsive. Police say he later died at Saint Vincent's Medical Center.

Investigators say Matias was swimming out to a group of friends when they lost contact with him.

"Witnesses reported that he was attempting to swim out to where they were on a float," says Fairfield Assistant Fire Chief Douglas Chavenelol. "They turned away, they turned back and he was gone."

The beach has been closed indefinitely. There is no word yet on funeral arrangements.

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