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Police believe body found on beach may be missing Seattle man

Bainbridge Island Police officers shield a male body during their investigation at the scene a couple of hours after the unidentified corpse was discovered Wednesday morning just off Manitou Beach Drive. - Dennis Anstine/Staff Photo
Bainbridge Island Police officers shield a male body during their investigation at the scene a couple of hours after the unidentified corpse was discovered Wednesday morning just off Manitou Beach Drive.
— image credit: Dennis Anstine/Staff Photo

A decomposed body that washed up on the rocky beach of Murden Cove’s east shore Wednesday has been identified by several news outlets in Seattle as Jeremy Peck, a 24-year-old West Seattle man who had missing since the early-morning hours of Dec. 24, 2010.

A Peck family spokesperson said the King County Medical Examiner’s office had told the family that it had identified Peck through his dental records.

The cause of death had not been yet been determined and identity information had not been released publicly by Friday by the medical examiner.

Bainbridge Island Police Det. Trevor Ziemba said Thursday that the medical examiner was expected to do an autopsy Friday to ascertain cause of death.

Ziemba was one of four Bainbridge police officers involved in the initial investigation after a passerby on Manitou Beach Drive saw the body at about 8 a.m. Wednesday. The body had surfaced about 20 feet from the bank when the high tide started to ebb.

Ziemba estimated that the bloated body had been in the water for two or three weeks and had apparently washed ashore overnight. It was exposed when the high tide receded around daybreak.

Officers responded quickly and eventually cordoned off much of the beach road until the body was removed at 11:30 a.m.

Ziemba said a criminal investigation would likely follow because there was some evidence of foul play.

The body was found about 20 feet from the bank and some 50 yards west of the Manitou Beach Drive-Beach Crest Drive intersection. It was visible from the road at a location that is well traveled by pedestrians, bicycles and vehicles during early-morning hours.

Ziemba said the body was so badly decomposed that it was difficult to ascertain the person’s race, but it was definitely an adult male.

“More specific identification was difficult,” he said. “We’re assuming that the body was just brought in by the high tide and then uncovered when it went out. We don’t think it has anything to do with Bainbridge other than ending up here.”


View Body found on Bainbridge Island in a larger map

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