Oregon State Police (OSP), with the assistance of the State Medical Examiner’s Office and Lincoln City Police Department, are investigating the cause of death of an adult male found early Tuesday morning floating in the ocean off Depoe Bay. The deceased was identified as a man reported missing Monday evening to Lincoln City Police Department after he failed to return from jet skiing in the ocean. His name is released in this update.
On Monday at approximately 9:30 p.m., Lincoln City Police Department was contacted by the girlfriend of a 24-year old DANIEL LEE AHLERS from Lincoln City reporting he was overdue from jet skiing in the ocean. Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office located the man’s vehicle and jet ski trailer in the parking lot at Knight Park near the mouth of Salmon River north of Lincoln City.
U.S. Coast Guard launched a boat and helicopter to search the ocean off Lincoln City. At approximately 1:00 a.m. an abandoned jet ski was spotted in the ocean off Salmon River and the continuing search led to the discovery of a body floating in the water about a mile off shore north of Depoe Bay. Coast Guard personnel retrieved the body about 7:30 a.m. and brought it to the Depoe Bay Station, but conditions kept them from retrieving the jet ski.
OSP Fish & Wildlife Trooper Heather Van Meter responded to start a death investigation. With the assistance of a deputy medical examiner, the body was identified as AHLERS. An autopsy is tentatively pending to help determine the cause of death.