PAnews.com, Port Arthur, Texas

Local News

February 4, 2014

County identifies body found in Neches River

PORT ARTHUR — The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office and the Vidor Police Department identified the body found floating in the Neches River near the Rainbow Bridge  as Christopher Reich, 35, of Vidor.

Autopsy results confirmed drowning as the cause of death. Reich was reported missing on Jan. 17, according to a news release from Deputy Rod Carroll.

At approximately 5 p.m. Monday, Feb. 3, the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office responded to a call that the United States Coast Guard had located a body in the Neches River near the Rainbow Bridge. The sheriff’s marine division recovered the body, with the assistance of the Port Arthur Fire Department.

The sheriff’s office requested the public’s assistance in identifying a heavily tattooed white male, approximately 25-35 years old, with a beard and mustache. By Monday night, Carroll said, they were fairly close to a positive identification.

“There was probably about a 99 percent chance that we knew who it was because of the tattoos,” Carroll said. “But we can’t identify with tattoos, so we had to wait for the fingerprints and dental records.”

Carroll added that the case looked to be a non-homicide drowning, but that the sheriff’s office would continue its investigation.

Email: ecallahan@panews.com

Twitter: @ErinnPA

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