Pinellas Deputies Investigating After Body Found in Boca Ciega Bay

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The body of 64 year-old Matthew Eelman of Gainesville, Florida was located today in Boca Ciega Bay

Deputies were called to the location at about 1:08 p.m. on Thursday, November
7, 2019 after a body was found floating near Intercoastal Waterway Marker #29 in Boca Ciega Bay.

According to deputies, Eelman was last seen leaving a friend’s vessel at approximately 1:00 a.m., early Thursday morning on November 7, 2019. Eelman, who had been drinking, was described as showing signs of impairment when he got onto his small boat to return to his live-aboard sailboat, located nearby.

On Thursday afternoon, November 7, 2019 at 12:15 p.m., a citizen located a small capsized boat and reported it to the Gulfport Police Department. That boat was later determined to be the same boat Eelman was last seen in.

About an hour later, at 1:08 p.m., a body, later identified as Eelman, was found floating nearby and Pinellas deputies were notified.

Deputies say the death appears accidental and not suspicious in nature.

The Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by the US Coast Guard and Gulfport Police Department.

Next of kin has been notified.

The investigation continues.

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