August 28, 2014

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Missing man found submerged in pond

Wellington Fire District Water Response team was called Wednesday to a pond where a car was submerged in a pond on property off Bursley Road in Huntington Township. STEVE MANHEIM/CHRONICLE

Wellington Fire District Water Response team was called Wednesday to a pond where a car was submerged in a pond on property off Bursley Road in Huntington Township. STEVE MANHEIM/CHRONICLE

HUNTINGTON TWP. — A man was found in his submerged vehicle in his backyard pond Wednesday afternoon after he was reported missing eight days ago.

Investigators believe 46-year-old Brian Hoffman accidentally or intentionally drove into the pond, according to Lorain County sheriff’s Sgt. Josh Croston.

The cause of Hoffman’s death was undetermined Wednesday, according to Dr. Frank Miller, a Lorain County deputy coroner. An autopsy on Hoffman is scheduled today.

An SUV that contained a body is removed from a pond Wednesday.

An SUV that contained a body is removed from a pond Wednesday.

Lorain County sheriff’s deputies and the Wellington Fire Department’s dive team were called to Hoffman’s home in the 47800 block of Bursley Road at 10:29 a.m. Wednesday and spent hours working to pull a Jeep Cherokee from the pond. Hoffman’s body was found in the driver’s seat.

Croston said investigators were double-checking the area and saw what could be tire tracks leading to the pond, which is behind the home and several yards from the road.

He said Hoffman was last seen Nov. 24, and his wife reported him missing Nov. 26 after waiting to see if he would turn up.

Croston said the vehicle was in approximately 14 to 15 feet of water, and it is unknown how Hoffman drove into it.

“You couldn’t see (the Jeep) from the surface,” he said.

Reporter Evan Goodenow contributed to this story.

Contact Chelsea Miller at 329-7123 or cmiller@chroniclet.com. Follow her on Twitter @ChelseaMillerCT.

  • Jennifer Williams

    Prayers to the family

  • Wendy Pearce

    This is heart-breaking. I met this man when I was 12. Prayers & sincere condolences to the family.

  • Jamie Smith

    This story is very sad and I Pray for this man’s Family. We don’t know the story but I hope his death is investigated as this is really bizarre.