General Crime

Nate Phillips Body Found in Ocean Near Aptos Beach, He Was Reported Missing Since Dec. 2, 2013

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A body found in the water near a Santa Cruz County pier has been identified as 17-year-old Nate Phillips, who was reported missing on Dec. 2, according to the sheriff’s office. The Santa Cruz County coroner’s office determined the identity of the body, and investigators do not believe any foul play was involved in the teen’s death, sheriff’s Deputy Ryan Kennedy said.

Last Thursday, a resident who lives near Seacliff State Beach in Aptos reported seeing a body floating near the beach’s pier, which has a permanently docked cement ship at the end, Kennedy said. The coroner’s office recovered the body at about 1:30 p.m. that day, Kennedy said.

The sheriff’s office had conducted a land, air and sea search for Nate after his bicycle was found near Center Avenue and Seacliff Drive at about 10 p.m. on Dec. 5.

He was last seen by his family at their home on Victoria Lane in Aptos on Dec. 2, when he told them he was “going on an adventure” and left on his bike with some supplies, sheriff’s officials said. His family members said Phillips had never run away from home before, according to sheriff’s officials.

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