Body of missing Columbia man found
COLUMBIA - The Boone County Sheriff's Department has identified the body of a previously missing Columbia man as Gaspar Soto-Reza.
Authorities said Soto-Reza's body was found Tuesday in Lake Caroline, in the County Downes subdivision north of Columbia.
The 27-year-old Soto-Reza went missing Saturday morning. The Boone County Fire Protection District (BCFPD) used boats, a K9 unit and a drone to search for the missing man at County Downes Beach on Lake Caroline over the weekend.
BCFPD Battalion Chief Gale Blomenkamp said it was not confirmed Soto-Reza ever went into the water, but told friends he was going swimming early Saturday morning and did not show up for work that same day. Blomenkamp said his clothes, cell phone and vehicle all were found near the lake.
Authorities called off the first day of searching about 6:15 p.m. Saturday and returned around 8 a.m. Sunday.
No official cause of death had been released Tuesday as an autopsy was scheduled to be performed.
Soto-Reza was a native of Mexico but had been living in the U.S. for several years. The investigation was ongoing Tuesday and anyone with more information was asked to contact the Boone County Sheriff's Department.
[Editor's note: This story has been updated to include more information.]