Body found in lake may be boater missing since May


DANBURY, N.C. (AP) — Officials say a body recovered from Belews Creek Lake is believed to be that of a missing boater who may have drowned there more than three months ago.

Local media outlets report that Stokes County officials say the body was found in the water Thursday afternoon. It will be taken to the medical examiner’s office for an autopsy.

Officials believe the body may belong to James Russell Bateman Jr., who was boating at the lake during the Memorial Day weekend in May.

Rescue crews say Bateman jumped off the boat to get his hat that blew off. His girlfriend, who was on the boat with him, saw him go under the water and disappear.

Officials say he wasn’t wearing a life jacket.

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