Autopsy concludes watercraft fatalities

An autopsy revealed a teenager drowned and 6-year-old died from bleeding in the brain after a personal watercraft accident Monday on Lake Tahoe.

Ashley Wagoner, 15, likely became unconscious or had the breath knocked out of her causing her to drown in her personal flotation device, said El Dorado County Coroner Pete Van Arnum on Wednesday.

Her cousin, Jordan Cockrell, who was sharing the rented Waverunner, died of a brain stem hemorrhage from a major skull fracture, Van Arnum said.

"Because of the trauma to his skull, that would have been a rapid death," he said.

Jordan and Ashley were on the Waverunner when they lost control and struck another cousin who sat on an idling personal watercraft.

Both were found face down in the water and pulled to shore. They were pronounced dead after being transported to the hospital.


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