CLEARWATER — Police are investigating the death of a young man who washed up beneath the Memorial Causeway Bridge on Tuesday afternoon.
Police have identified the body as Taylor Ryan Jones, 25, of 27 Heilwood Street No. 6 in Clearwater Beach. A passer-by found him face down. Police are investigating, and the medical examiner's report on the cause of death was not expected today.
Police were called to the scene on the west end of the bridge where Jones' body was found face-down on the rocky beach. His feet were toward the shore; his head was pointing north toward the water.
Police spokeswoman Joelle Castelli said it was too early to say whether this was a suspicious death.
From the top of the bridge, Jones' body looked like a mannequin. He was wearing a blue T-shirt, khaki shorts and white sneakers. His arms were stiff and bent. A passer-by notified police.
Aaron Shaw, 21, was one of the first people to notice the body. He said he was crossing the bridge Tuesday afternoon when someone stopped him and asked for a cell phone.
He didn't have one, but he saw the body lying on the beach. So he followed the other man down to the water.
Shaw walked along the sand and came to the body. When he got 3 feet away, he stopped. "I'm not going to touch someone's dead body," Shaw said.
When paramedics came, they rolled Jones' body over, and Shaw saw blood coming out of his face. He also saw a life jacket nearby.
Police spent the afternoon looking for clues on the beach.
Jonathan Abel can be reached at [email protected] or (727) 445-4157.