Teen drowns at Chewacla State Park in Auburn

Alabama News
(Jamari Smith)

AUBURN, Ala. (WRBL) – Auburn police say a Montgomery teen has drowned in a tragic swimming accident in the lake area of Chewacla State Park in Auburn.

Wednesday, May 27, at 4:30 p.m. Auburn Police and Fire Personnel, along with EMS Paramedics responded to an accidental drowning call in the 100 blocks of Shell Toomer Parkway.

Lee County Coroner Bill Harris has identified the victim as 18-year-old Jamari Smith, of Montgomery.

Smith was a star athlete who played on the Lee-Montgomery basketball team that won the AHSAA 7A State Title in February. He had signed with the University of Alabama at Birmingham to play basketball for the Blazers in the fall.

Harris says Smith was located underwater in the lake. Advanced life support measures were undertaken, but efforts to revive Smith were unsuccessful.

“The victim, an 18-year-old male from Montgomery, Alabama, was extracted from the water by first responders, upon arrival to the scene. CPR was immediately performed on the victim to resuscitate him and was continued when Emergency Medical personnel arrived on the scene,” said Assistant Chief of Police Clarance Stewart.

Smith was with friends swimming at the lake when he apparently became tired and went under. 911 was called as the friends attempted to locate Smith. Auburn Fire located the victim shortly after their arrival. Smith was transported by ambulance to East Alabama Medical Center’s Emergency Room, where he continued to receive lifesaving treatment.

“Tragically, those efforts were unsuccessful, and the victim was pronounced deceased by an Emergency Room Physician at 6:05 p.m.,” shared Stewart.

All indications are the victim died as a result of an accidental drowning. However, Auburn police continue investigating.

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