17-year-old SML drowning victim identified by family as Staunton River HS student

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Chase Mullins, Courtesy: Family

BEDFORD COUNTY (WSLS 10) - The 17-year-old who died Sunday night after drowning at Smith Mountain Lake was identified by family as Chase Mullins. He went to Staunton River High School.

Bedford County sheriff's deputies said they responded to a community dock located off Lake Retreat Road in the Mariners Landing subdivision at Smith Mountain Lake in reference to a possible drowning incident at 10:22 p.m. Sunday, July 26. Deputies were told that a 17-year-old male dove off a dock into the lake, but had not resurfaced.

After a search of the area by emergency personnel, including Bedford County Fire & Rescue, Department of Game & Inland Fisheries, and the Sheriff's Office, Mullins' body was found in the water nearby.

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The incident was being called an accident.

First responders said its important to know the depth of the water. They said the depths at the location were very inconsistent.

First responders said Monday it was a very emotional scene. There were about 20 people nearby waiting for searchers to bring them news. Many of those responders said they were unable to sleep Sunday night.

Investigators and the Medical Examiner responded to investigate.

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