Sabine Lake drowning victim identified

Published 4:24 pm Monday, August 17, 2015

The Florida man who drowned during a local fishing tournament on Sabine Lake Saturday afternoon has been identified as 42-year-old Manuel Perez.

Perez — a resident of Punta Gorda, Fla., a city on the west side of the state about 55 miles southeast of Sarasota — was found after a group of fishermen participating in a Redfish Tournament said they noticed one of their boats was unoccupied.

According to a press release from the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, the fishermen found Perez floating face down about 100 yards away from the empty boat. When deputies with the Jefferson County Marine Division and the Port Arthur Fire Department arrived at the lake, they found the fishermen with Perez about 1.5 miles southeast of Stutes Island on Sabine Lake.

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The fisherman said they retrieved Perez from the water and tried CPR until the first responders arrived.

The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office release states Perez had a history of seizures, but the investigation is still ongoing.

Perez was described Saturday evening as a 41-year-old Florida resident, but the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office updated his age when they released his name Monday.

Twitter: @crhenderson90