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Body of man believed to be day laborer found in Peconic River, police say

A detective in Riverhead looks into the Peconic

A detective in Riverhead looks into the Peconic River where a body was found floating face down on Tuesday, Aug. 11, 2015. Photo Credit: Stringer News / AJ Ryan

The body of a man believed to be a landscaping laborer was found floating Tuesday afternoon in the Peconic River in what may be an accidental death, Riverhead Town police said.

The victim was identified as Victoriano Cohon-Garcia, 34. His body was discovered about 5:10 p.m. in the waters by Grangebel Park, behind West Main Street, authorities said.

"Somehow he fell into the water," said Det. Patrick Waski. "We don't think there's anything criminal behind it right now."

The Riverhead Town police dive team removed the body from the water.

The body was spotted behind Riverside Laundry on West Main Street, where one shopkeeper dashed down to the shoreline after the discovery, said Elizabeth Smith, the laundry's manager.

"I was sitting outside smoking a cigarette and someone said something to the guy next door and he ran out there and said, 'It's a body. Call the police,' " said Smith, a 16-year employee of the laundry.

Smith said she called 911 and saw a man in the river who appeared to be in his 30s or 40s, his arms stretched above his head.

The discovery of a body had drawn onlookers and several were forthcoming with information about the man, Waski said. "He's been living in Riverhead for a while," the detective said.

Waski said detectives will continue the investigation with the medical examiner's office.

"We're trying to put the pieces of the puzzle together," Waski said.

Grangebel Park has been a hangout for vagrants and laborers waiting for jobs, Smith said. At night, she added, police clear people out of the park.

Detectives asked that anyone with information call them at 631-727-4500, ext. 289.


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