Authorities in New Brunswick, New Jersey, are still working to piece together the details after an entire family drowned in an above-ground pool on June 22, 2020.
The family members were 62-year-old Bharat Patel, his daughter-in-law Nisha Patel, and Nisha’s 8-year-old daughter. The above-ground pool has been described as “mostly shallow,” at 3½ feet, but one section of the pool was 7 feet deep. Authorities currently believe that none of the family members knew how to swim.
“A neighbor heard screaming and dialed 911. All the deceased were taken out of the pool,” East Brunswick Police Lt. Frank Sutter previously stated.
“CPR was done and they were all pronounced in the backyard.”
The family had lived in the home for only about a month, and many of their neighbors were surprised and saddened to learn about their deaths. The nature of the deaths has also been confusing for several people. The current theory that authorities are working with is that the 8-year-old somehow fell into the pool, and her mother and grandfather both went in to retrieve her.
Initially, many believed that the family might have been accidentally electrocuted. An electrician’s truck reportedly arrived at the house shortly after the family members were pronounced dead. A neighbor noted, “The fact that they had an electrician’s truck show up shortly thereafter. It wouldn’t make sense that three people just drowned right away like that. With an adult there, too.”
Footage provided by CBS New York
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