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Adult Male Drowns in Lake at Cerritos Regional Park

UPDATE: Wednesday, JUNE 18 at 10:25 a.m.

By Brian Hews

Hundreds of witnesses who were attending Father’s Day picnics at Cerritos Regional Park this past Sunday when they witnessed an adult man leap into a murky fishing lake and drown.
The victim, only being described by members of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department as “an adult male” apparently decided to “take a swim” in the 16-foot lake that is stocked regularly with fish but realized that was in immediate distress.

Hews Media Group interviewed several witnesses of the incident less than a half hour after the drowning took place and after an officer from the Cerritos Sheriff’s Station jumped into the lake in attempt to save the unidentified victim.

Family members saw the drowning take place, and that one of the daughters of the victim captured the entire incident on a cell phone.

Family and friends of the victim did not speak to the several reporters who quickly converged on the park that is located at Bloomfield Avenue and 195th Street.

One witness, from Compton, said that two people jumped into the lake to help save the man to no avail.

Homicide detectives were interviewing witnesses.

A group of local residents from Cerritos and Artesia gathered at the location and began placing memorial candles where the death took place.

Ed Winter, a spokesperson for the Los Angeles County Coroner told HMG-CN on Wednesday afternoon that the name of the victim had not been released to members of the media pending notification purposes. 

By Brian Hews and Randy Economy

First post: Sunday June 15, 8:00 pm

Hews Media Group-Community News has learned that a drowning has occurred at Cerritos Regional Park. Sheriffs are converging on the lake to investigate.

Update: 9:00 pm

Reports into HMG-CN say that Sheriifs have pulled  a body from Cerritos Regional Park lake.


HMG-CN has learned that a 31 year old male was pulled from the lake.

UPDATE: 9:29 p.m.

Witnesses have told HMG-CN that the victim jumped into the lake at the Cerritos Regional Park to apparently “take a swim” but once he was in the murky water realized that was in immediate distress.

The deceased victim was pulled from the lake from a female officer with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.  Witnesses also tell the newspaper that the victims family members saw the drowning take place, and that one of the daughters of the victim captured the entire situation on a cell phone.

Family and friends of the victim, did not speak to the several reporters who were at the park who converged on the park located at Bloomfield Avenue and 195th Street.  One witness, from Compton, said that two people jumped into the lake to help save the man.

Homicide detectives were interviewing witnesses.

A group of local residents from Cerritos and Artesia have gathered at the location and are placing memorial candles where the incident took place.

Approximate location where the drowning took place at Cerritos Regional Park on Fathers Day afternoon.

Approximate location where the drowning took place at Cerritos Regional Park on Fathers Day afternoon.

10:17 p.m. UPDATE:

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department has sent the following statement to HMG-CN about the drowning at Cerritos Regional Park.

DATE: Sunday, June 15, 2014  TIME: 6:24 P.M. LOCATION: 19000 blk Bloomfield Avenue, Cerritos

Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Homicide detectives responded to the 19000 block of Bloomfield Avenue, Cerritos, to investigate the circumstances surrounding the drowning death of a male adult.  The male adult was transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead.  There does not appear to be any evidence of foul play.  There is no additional information available at this time. 
Anyone with information about this incident is encouraged to contact the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s Homicide Bureau at (323) 890-5500. If you prefer to provide information anonymously, you may call “Crime Stoppers” by dialing (800) 222-TIPS (8477), or texting the letters TIPLA plus your tip to CRIMES (274637), or by using the website http://lacrimestoppers.org

UPDATE AT 11:16 p.m.

HMG-CN has confirmed that family members of the victim and other visitors at Cerritos Regional Park first called for help at about 6:30 p.m. after the man did not resurface after he voluntarily jumped into the lake.

Witnesses also tell the newspaper that the victim had apparently been drinking alcohol and was attending a Family Reunion at the popular park.

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  • M c M a h o n says:


    Tell you what I know about the drowning; just talked to some of the family members on the 195th parking lots @ Regional Park.

    There was two (2) brothers, both intoxicated, and swam across the lake, after making bets for swimming. Their family said they were both in their 50’s, African American males. There was large family reunion picnic on the No side of the western lakefront @ Cer Reg Park.

    After one of the brothers made it partially across Lake, the pump in the middle of the lake, pulled him down and he drowned. If I’m not mistaken, this is not the first drowning in the lake, and there have been others too, plus shootings and murders in the park.

    Remember when one lady was burned to death in her car, as the car burned along with her inside of it.

    Upsets me the most, I call the Cerritos sheriff station, as the call centers, stated it was nothing accident at the park, which needed medical attention. EM Helicopter was landing at park, that is more, then nothing 911. Helicopter interrupted our backyard picnic.

    When there’s life involved, that is no accident; that is serious business, when a life is lost. Then when I talked to one of the sheriff’s deputies at the park, deputy said it was nothing, only a drowning. Poor taste of words or is the race card being played out in the Sheriffs station like the 20 Yr anniversary of OJ/Nicole. Sounds to me, more like Mark Fuhrman gang of deputies.

    Hmmm, called earlier in the weekend, sheriff desk operator stated city has no weekend Code Enforcement staff, but Dr. Greg Berg, PHD, Ret. Director of Community Safety, states we have weekend code enforcement staff. Just typical, sheriff station is out to lunch, but here for paycheck and perks.



    • Randy R. Economy says:

      To McMahon: In response to your note.

      Hews Media Group-Community Newspaper is waiting for an official report from both the Sheriff’s Department and the Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office.

      We are only reporting the facts that have been given to us from authorities and witnesses.

      –Randy Economy
      On Line Editor
      Hews Media Group-Community Newspaper

  • alaisha browder says:

    That was my childhood friend and God brother. …please keep the family in Prayer

  • M c M a h o n says:


    Man made lake is deeper in the center, but can not remember the exact depth, but remember walking across the dry lake bed during re construction aprox 15 yrs ago, when the park was going thru rehab. In the center of the lake bed, there are re circulating water pumps, as heard one of these pumps may have been the causation to this drowning.

    Also, the upper lake has another pump station in order to operate the water fountain system.

    There is an accumulation of all sorts of fish, some are imported in to the lake during the annual Fathers Day Fishing Derby, but other fish are planted by the general public. I have witnessed live fish being air dropped in to the lake, by the fowl which frequent the area.

    There is allot of maritme horticultural growths which survive and take over the murky water; plus at times, the maintenance crews drudges the lake to remove the maritime horticulture from taking over 100% of the water.

    At times there are turtles, frogs, worms, insects breeding in the lake too. All sorts of seasonal fowl breed in and around the Lake Front and waters. Wild coyotes, hawks and barnyard animals, come a prey off of the fish and fowl in the lake.

    Unfortunately the lake is smorgasbord of life which can withstand dirty water.

    Too bad the LA | P&R does not drain the lakes yearly, to clean the sediment from the black plastic lake liners and rejuvenate the water with fresh imported water.

    KNABE has erected a new Regional Park Marquee Sign along Bloomfield.

    Very tragic accident for the family on fathers day. Will say the lake is aprox 35-37 yrs old and have been a comfort zone for millions of park goers 24 hrs./7 days week. Always say, the water at the 2 lakes is like having a free psychiatrist, as public plays and performs all sorts of recreation around the lakes, 24/7. If the lakes could talk, there are millions of stories related to the comforting of the 2 lakes.

    The park is funded by LA County Park and Recreation funding, so is open to all people in Los Angeles County, as funds are supported by LA Co. budget and not city of Cerritos. Cerritos only operates the southern end of the park, AKA: Cerritos Sports Complex.
    • Need for free 911 Phones, all throughout park.
    • Need for long life support poles, to pull anything from water.
    • Need for plastic support rings.
    • Need to brand the depths of the lake.
    • Need to police no drinking laws on the books.
    • Need to have lifeguard or park rangers employed during peak usage.
    • Need for improved water maintenance service.

    Love or hate, the park creates ecological environment for the area and Coyotes Creek too.

  • Jess says:

    I was there yesterday when it happened. My prayers go out to the family. Also I was very pleased to see how fast the sheriffs dept arrived, they didn’t even ask any question upon arriving they all just dove right in to try to save him.

  • Betty Vander Wal says:

    How very tragic for all involved.
    Why do we question If Code Enforcement Officers were at work when Park rules are : No alcohol allowed. Why do we not question why adults can’t follow the rules and teach their children the same in the process? Now we have numerous children who will be blaming LASD, Park officials etc. for lack of common sense in the ones who are responsible.

    • M c M a h o n says:

      REPLY TO BV Wal:

      You’re assuming that all signs are legible, and that everybody speaks English and no one is blind, plus educated on laws of parks and boooz?


      Many of the posted signs are menopause from weathering and not legible. County Parks has responsibility in preventing accidents at the park; that is why LA County has employed mobile Park Payroll Staffers for policing. Why does policing look away from public consumption of alcohol and additionally, which business provided the alcohol to the park goers? Is the race card being played at the park?????


      LA Co P&R, needs to have more safety nets around the lake, when the park has become a global attraction for park users. Safety nets need to be 911 emergencies:
      • Long 911 extension Poles.
      • Break A-way 911 emergency posts.
      • Floating Buoys.
      • Ropes.
      • Handrails to prevent or discourage slip n fall accidents in to the lakes.


      LA Co Board of Supervisor, Don Knabe and family have been life long residents of the park hood, as they live adj to the Regional Park. We look upwards to the county and appointees to be gods & drive us through life. Knabe’s (Ret. Mayor) and Supervisor, should make on going recommendations to improve the Regional Park safety and policing. Also, how many CCC/commssioners live adj to the park and have been silence to the ongoing issues facing the park operations? Cerritos operates the southern section of the Regional Park, called Sports center, but seldom discuss the operations at Park Commissioner Hearings or CCC hearings.

      Will commend Knabe, as the park has been upgraded and improvements to maintain protocol; vastly over the past decade, compared to conception in the late 70’s.


      Additionally, Cerritos Sheriff Department, needs to be dissolved and city needs to create new Police Department. Where were the Cerritos on Patrol volunteers this Father Days, as peak holidays, the parks are jammed w/ users?