Body found in river identified as Erik Phillips; Gofundme campaign set up

As Seen On WATE

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – Knoxville Police Department confirming that the body recovered Friday by KFD has been identified as Erik Phillips, who drowned Tuesday night at Scottish Pike Park.

A gofundme has been set up to help his family cover funeral costs.

KPD update on search for drowning victim from Tuesday night Knoxville Police Department investigators have…

Posted by Knoxville Police Department – TN on Saturday, September 21, 2019

Original Story:

The search efforts for a man whose friends say jumped into the Tennessee River Tuesday night was paused for the night, with officials saying they’ll resume Friday morning.

Search teams were looking for the body of Erik Phillips, who had been swimming with friends and family Tuesday evening when he jumped off a train trestle bridge, disappearing.

The search later Wednesday had been converted to a recovery mission, and as of Wednesday night, was ongoing and Phillips’ body had not been found.

Knox Rescue Squad telling WATE 6 On Your Side Phillips’ body had not been recovered and the search will resume Friday.

Wednesday evening, the Blount County Special Operations (BSORT) arrived on the scene to assist Knoxville Rescue Squad. BSORT will utilize a ROV (Remote Operated Vehicle) with a camera to help find the body.

First responders with Knoxville Fire Department, Knoxville Police Department, Knox County Sheriff and Knox Rescue were at the scene of a reported drowning Tuesday night.

The call came in just before 8 p.m. of a reported drowning off of Scottish Pike in South Knoxville.

A spokesperson with KFD at the scene telling WATE 6 On Your Side that the man’s friends said he jumped off a bridge into the river and resurfaced briefly before going back under.

(Google Maps)

Scottish Pike runs south along the Tennessee River.

A press release sent out later Tuesday night states:

“An individual had been swimming with friends and walked approximately halfway across the railroad bridge located southwest of Lake Loudon Boulevard and Neyland Drive that extends over the Tennessee River. The individual jumped from the bridge, briefly resurfaced, and then went under the water and did not resurface. As of the time of this release, the individual has not been located. Resources from the Knoxville Police Department, Knoxville Fire Department, Rescue Squad, and the Knox County Sheriff’s Department are being used to search the waterway and the surrounding area.”

Knoxville Police Department

WATE 6 On Your Side is working to learn more and will update with additional details upon confirmation from officials.

(Photo: WATE)

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