Body of missing swimmer found in the Rogue River

Update (8/16/19 6:30 p.m.) –At about 1:30 p.m. Friday, the body of missing swimmer Jason Briggs was located about 500 yards downstream from where he was last seen on August 15.

Five divers were in the water Friday looking for 44-year old Jason Briggs.

“We at the sheriff’s office, unfortunately, experience cases like this every year,” Undersheriff Travis Synder, Josephine County Sheriff’s Office, said.

The sheriff’s office said Briggs was reported missing just after 6 o’clock Thursday night.

“New to the area from what we understand and was camping nearby,” Synder said.

The sheriff’s office said Brigg’s friends called 911 after he went underwater and wasn’t seen again.

Employees at the nearby Galice Resort also sprung into action.

“The employees that work out in our boat shed that also take folks down the river on rafts, they jumped in a raft and headed downriver,” employee Wendy Jones, said.

The sheriff’s office and Rural Metro Fire also joined in the search.

“They searched until about 9 o’clock last night and then as darkness was creeping in on them they halted the search for safety precautions and resumed back again today,” Snyder said.

The sheriff’s office said the river this time of year is dangerous for swimmers and anyone else on the water.

“We recommend that if you’re not a solid swimmer that you don’t try to swim across the river, even if you are an experienced swimmer life jackets are always recommended, safety is always number one for us,” Snyder said.

The case will now be handed over to a state medical examiner.


Original story: JOSEPHINE COUNTY, Ore. – Police are continuing the search for a man who disappeared while swimming in the Rogue River.

The Josephine County Sheriff’s Office said on the afternoon of August 15, 44-year-old Jason Briggs was trying to swim across the Rogue River near the Galice Resort. Friends saw Briggs go underwater and he wasn’t seen again.

Personnel from the resort tried to find Briggs immediately after the incident. They were soon joined by deputies and other first responders until search efforts were called off when darkness fell.

The search for Briggs resumed Friday morning. Deputies said Briggs is described as slender with long, light brown hair. He was last seen wearing a grey t-shirt and blue swim trunks.

Deputies will provide more details about the ongoing search as they become available.

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