Witnesses say Cainen Bryan Johnson, 19, of Nampa, was swimming Sunday in Claytonia Pond in Marsing when he began to struggle and called for help. When a friend swam to help, Johnson began to pull him under the water’s surface. The friend broke free and swam to the shore, calling Owyhee County dispatchers at 3:29 p.m., according to the Owyhee County Sheriff’s Office.
A bystander swam out to the spot where Johnson had struggled and waited in the water until authorities arrived. Owyhee sheriff’s deputies and divers, Marsing ambulance, Canyon County marine deputies and Nampa divers responded to the incident.
Johnson’s body was in the water for an hour before he was discovered by a Nampa diver.
“When we got him to the surface there was no pulse. We did not do CPR because he had been in the water for such an extended period of time,” said Lynn Bowman, chief deputy with the Owyhee County Sheriff’s Office.
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Johnson was found 70 to 100 feet from the shore on the southeast side of the pond. The bottom of the pond is estimated to be about 25 feet deep, Bowman said.
The Owyhee County Coroner’s Office is looking into Johnson’s death.
Fatal incidents at Claytonia Pond are rare, said Bowman, who thought the last such incident happened at least 16 or 17 years ago. Statesman archives show Jerrod Jensen, 14, of Marsing drowned in the pond in 1997.