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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Crime/Public Safety

Third Spokane River drowning victim in a week identified

UPDATED: Mon., June 29, 2020

The Spokane County Medical Examiner’s Office has identified a man who drowned in the Spokane River last week.

Jaspreet Turna, 28, drowned while rafting the river on June 23, the medical examiner said Thursday. His death was ruled an accident.

Turna was floating the river with a group of friends when his tube struck a bridge support near People’s Park in Spokane, said Spokane Police Officer John O’Brien. Turna was thrown from the raft.

At least one other member of the group unsuccessfully tried to rescue Turna, O’Brien said. Turna was not wearing a life jacket at the time of the accident.

Turna’s death is one of three drownings in the Spokane River within the last week. On Friday, a 35-year-old Spokane Valley man drowned rescuing his wife and daughter from a capsized boat in Corbin Park near Post Falls. He jumped into the water without a life jacket.

Less than 24 hours later, a 61-year-old Hauser Lake man drowned in the river at Corbin Park after rapids threw him and two children from a kayak. The children, who were wearing life jackets, survived. The man, who has not been identified by authorities, was not wearing a life jacket.

O’Brien said Turna’s death is a tragic reminder that the Spokane River runs “fast and cold” during spring and summer, and of the importance of wearing life jackets while recreating on the river.

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