Authorities identify body found in Lahontan Reservoir

A man whose body was recovered from a submerged pickup at Lahontan Reservoir in late August has been identified as a 77-year-old Sparks man, Churchill County Sheriff Ben Trotter said Thursday.

Trotter said the Washoe County Crime Lab used DNA from the man’s family to identify him as Antonio Garcia-Armendarz, who was reported to Sparks Police Department as missing on Nov. 19, 2017.

“We are waiting for an official cause of death from the Washoe County Medical Examiner’s Office but there is nothing suspicious in the case or the initial Sparks report,” Trotter said. “The family was notified upon confirmation of the deceased’s identity.”

Trotter said investigators had a hunch the recovered body was that of Garcia-Armendarz, but CCSO had to wait for positive identification. Until the next report comes back, Trotter said he wouldn’t comment on a cause or motive for Garcia-Armendarz’s death.

Trotter said the man’s decomposed body and his Toyota Tundra were recovered from Lahontan on Aug. 31. He said as the reservoir’s water level began to drop during the summer, a person noticed the submerged vehicle at the end of the boat ramp on the Carson Highway side. After the Fallon Churchill Volunteer Fire Department’s dive team assisted the CCSO with the removal of the truck, Trotter said investigators noted a number of scratches and dents caused by boat propellers when the pickup was submerged.

Based on the information taken from the investigation, Trotter said it appears Garcia-Armendarz backed the trailer-less vehicle down the ramp and into the water.


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