Male body found floating face down in Lakeforest Mall retention pond

GAITHERSBURG, Md. (WJLA) - Yellow police tape surrounds a retention pond at the Lakeforest Mall in Gaithersburg, after a male body was pulled from the water Tuesday.

Shortly before 10 a.m., a passerby called police to report a body floating face down in the murky water near the corner of Montgomery Village and Russell avenues.

Homicide detectives and forensic investigators used a ladder truck to survey the scene from above. Recovery crews, dressed in all white protective suits, then walked down an embankment to the water's edge. There, they used poles to retrieve the man's fully clothed body, which was wrapped and carried to an emergency vehicle.

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Montgomery County Police Capt. Paul Starks says detectives have launched a death investigation. While there are no visible signs of forced injury, police have not ruled out foul play.

The swarm of emergency vehicles, recovery teams, and news crews attracted a crowd of shoppers; most were troubled by the scene.

"How does this happen in such a pond? Could he have been thrown in there?" one woman asked. "I just feel for his family, whoever they are."

The medical examiner's office has scheduled an autopsy for Wednesday, which will hopefully identify a cause of death.

Detectives are working to identify the adult man.

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