Man drowns in rain-swollen canal in Desoto Parish

A man drowned April 22 when he was swept away by fast-moving floodwaters while trying to...
A man drowned April 22 when he was swept away by fast-moving floodwaters while trying to retrieve a garbage can from a canal along Gibbs Street in Mansfield. (Source: Bubba Kneipp/KSLA News 12)(KALB)
Published: Apr. 23, 2020 at 2:49 AM CDT
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A man drowned while trying to retrieve his garbage can.

Authorities say it happened during storms Wednesday in Mansfield.

“Mansfield Police Department and Mansfield Fire Department responded to a report of an individual seen going into the flooded area to retrieve his trash can,” DeSoto Sheriff Jayson Richardson said. “Eventually he was swept into some moving water. ”

Heavy rain across DeSoto Parish and elsewhere in the ArkLaTex had spawned flash flooding.

The man was attempting to get the can out of a canal off Gibbs Street when he fell in, authorities say.

The water wasn’t that high but was moving very fast and swept him away.

There were several 911 calls and a lengthy search.

Searchers recovered the man’s body about 50 yards downstream about 1.5 hours after he fell in.

The man was carrying no identification, authorities say.

Mansfield Police and Fire Departments, the DeSoto Parish Sheriff’s Office, DeSoto Fire Districts 1 and 8 and EMS responded to the scene.

Sheriff Richardson says around the same time as the search, DeSoto Parish deputies were rescuing people from their flooded homes just a few blocks away.

“We probably had a dozen houses that were flooded just a short distance from here," Richardson said. "The neighborhood has about 4,5 feet of water. We also had to open up a shelter for the moment to these individuals who were displaced and we are still working on that at the moment.”

Although the waters have now gone down, Richardson says today was like nothing he has seen.

“Particularly the southern half of the parish," Richardson said. "Grand Cane south took a really hard hit today with water. The normal places that flood, of course, were flooded, but to a new level we haven’t seen in a while and then we had places that we don’t see flooding, that there was water standing. Particularly this neighborhood, which saw 4, 5 feet of water. Not sure how much we got, but it was a lot.”

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