This is the fourth time since May that remains have been found in the popular recreation areas of the famous water tank.
Park rangers were called Saturday after human remains were discovered in Swim Beach, according to a statement from the National Park Service.
Divers in place
Throughout the weekend, park rangers and divers from the Las Vegas Police Department have been working to recover the remains. A medical examiner was also called to determine the cause of death.
It is currently unclear how long the most recent discoveries have been in the lake.
The water level in Lake Mead has declined over many years as western parts of the United States have experienced significant water shortages. The water is now at its lowest level since the reservoir was built in the 1930s.
Among the previous finds was the body of a person placed in a rusty barrel. According to the authorities, he must have been shot in the head. The discovery, which was made at Hemenway Harbor on May 1, is now under investigation as a murder by the Metropolitan Police in Las Vegas.
– When you have a body in a barrel, it’s clear someone else is involved, Las Vegas Police Lt. Jason Johansson tells CNN.
The coroner concluded that the body died sometime between the mid-1970s and early 1980s.
On May 7, the remains were found in Calville Bay. Authorities believe the body must have been between 23 and 37 years old when the person in question died. The cause of death is currently unknown.
On July 25, a new discovery was made in Swim Beach. The remains have not yet been identified. The cause of death is also unknown.
The lake is located on the border between Nevada and Arizona. All the bodies sparked speculation that the mafia, which played a prominent role in Las Vegas, used the lake to dump the bodies. Police have not yet confirmed that they are working on this theory.
It’s just speculation, says Johansson.
A spokesperson for the park service told CNN that the bodies likely were of people who drowned in the lake when the water level was much higher.
In the 80s, the water level in the artificial reservoir was at its highest – 373 meters above sea level. But severe drought has led to an ever-decreasing water level. Now the lake is at its lowest level since it was built in the 1930s.
On July 18, Lake Mead was filled to only 27 percent of its capacity, according to NASA calculations.
The falling water level poses a threat to the approximately 25 million people who depend on the lake for their water source. In addition, it threatens the region’s energy production and tourism.
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