Family finds badly decomposed body in Colorado River

The Travis County Sheriff's Office is investigating after a body was found in the Colorado River. It was spotted on the south side of the river near the Austin’s Colony Neighborhood Park, just east of the SH 130 toll road.

“A family made a very, very gruesome discovery,” said Travis County Sheriff’s Office Senior Public Information Officer Roger Wade.

Saturday, a family spending time outside near Hornsby Bend saw something floating in the water.

“A family playing in the park spotted what they thought was a body in the water and notified our office,” Wade said.

They reported the body to the Travis County Sheriff's Office just after 3pm.

“What I've been told right now is it's badly decomposed and we are not even sure of race or sex,” said Wade.

Confirming that the object in the river was in fact a person proved to be difficult for detectives. 

“We had to call STAR Flight to kind of hover over the scene to make sure that's what it really looked like, and it really did look like a body, before we had to call the fire department and other resources to come out here to make a recovery,” Wade said.

Because of the location, investigators and the Travis County Medical Examiner boarded a boat upstream to get to the area. “They'll take the body to the Medical Examiner's office where they'll do a complete investigation to determine the cause of death and then try to make a positive ID and then notify next of kin,” Wade said. 

Detectives will have to investigate further to find out if this could be a flood victim.

“We'll definitely check through missing person’s reports and all that to try and figure out who this may be,” said Wade.   

The river was not closed to the public during the recovery.

Sheriff's deputies don't expect any additional information until the Medical Examiner is able to investigate.