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Body of 14-year-old boy pulled from Lake Ontario, police say he drowned while swimming

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The body of a 14-year-old boy has been pulled from Lake Ontario after police say he drowned while swimming near Ashbridges Bay Park on Sunday night.

Police previously said that they were called to the east-end park at around 6 p.m. for a report of a person missing in the water.

Speaking to reporters on Monday morning, Acting Insp. Dan Pravica said the boy was swimming with a friend when he began to struggle and went under the water.

The boy’s friend called out for help and a passerby jumped into the water to try to assist, Pravica said.

“I believe a husband and wife were walking by and the husband jumped in,” he added.

Several fire rescue boats were deployed near Northern Dancer Boulevard and Lake Shore Boulevard East on Sunday night in an effort to locate the missing youth but the rescue efforts were unsuccessful.

Police confirmed that the boy’s body was recovered at around 9 a.m. on Monday morning.

Emergency responders search Ashbridges Bay on April 14 following reports of a person in distress in the water. (Phil Marion/Photo)

Pravica told reporters that the body was found not far from where crews were searching on Sunday night.

He could not confirm the circumstances that led to the drowning.

“In the area where they were swimming, I’ve been told there is undertow there, that it is a steep drop off,” he said. “So there could be a combination of factors. I’m not sure how capable he was at swimming or not. I have no idea so I don’t want to speculate on that.”

While the boy was wearing shorts at the time of the incident, Pravica said it is unclear if he and his friend went to the water on Sunday with the intention of swimming.

“I do not believe he was wearing a life jacket,” the inspector said.

The teen is believed to be a resident of Toronto, he added.

“It is difficult anytime we find a person (in the water)… never mind a 14-year-old,” Pravica said. “I can’t imagine what the family is going through at this time.”

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