Victor Manuel Videla-Hernandez drowns in North Laurel reservoir

A boat searches for the missing boy on Monday. (Photo: Tom Roussey)

The drowning death of a 15-year-old teen in a Maryland reservoir is still under investigation nearly 24 hours after his body was found.

Montgomery County Police say that the body of Victor Manuel Videla-Hernandez, a Laurel native, was recovered just after 7 p.m. Monday by first responders after he disappeared while swimming in the Rock Gorge Reservoir in North Laurel.

Videla-Hernandez was near Scotts Cove with family members when he left to find other family members nearby, officials say. Shortly thereafter, at about 3:45 p.m., a witness saw him go underwater. He did not surface.

Rescue crews spent about three hours searching for the 15-year-old before his body was found. Water temperatures at the time were only around 50 degrees.

People who use Scott's Cove for recreation say even though swimming is banned, it's not unusual to see people doing it.

The Alavarado family of Laurel had just started their family reunion at Scott's Cove when a man came running up near them.

"The guy told them he needed help because he saw a boy that was drowning in the water," Yasmi Cardenas says.

Police say at some point the boy walked away, leaving most of his clothes on the shore to go swimming. Sometime after that, boaters heard his cries for help. Sonar found his body only 30 yards from the shore.

"They thought that it could be a body, but a lot of times it could be some other structure that's under the water, like a rock or a tree," Montgomery County Police Capt. Paul Starks said. "In this case, it turned out to be the victim."

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