Brothers Michael and Timothy Miller died at the Scorpion Bay Marina at Lake Pleasant Regional Park Sunday, July 12.
Electrocution is a suspected “factor” in the deaths, according to the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office.
The Peoria Fire-Medical Department responded to a 911 call at 6:20 p.m. Sunday at Scorpion Bay Marina.
“Originally it was thought to be a drowning, turns out to be a possible electrocution accident,” said Mario Bravo, a fire department spokesman.
MCSO Sgt. Joaquin Enriquez said lake patrol deputies found Michael Miller, 50, unresponsive on the swim deck of his boat.
He was transported to a hospital where he died, Enriquez said.
“Michael’s brother, 53-year-old Timothy Miller, was located deceased floating under the dock,” Enriquez said.
“Two additional victims who were rescued by bystanders had described symptoms similar to electrical current in the water.”
Witnesses told investigators the Miller brothers and their wives were on their boat at the marina when Timothy jumped in the water.
“Timothy began to have issues in the water. Michael jumped into the water to help his brother and he also began experiencing a similar reaction. Timothy became unresponsive and went underwater. An additional person entered the water to help and once again experienced what was later described symptoms similar to electrical current in the water. Bystanders were able to pull Michael and the other person who tried to help from the water however Timothy was not located,” Enriquez said.
The third victim - the wife of one of the brothers - survived and “described some type of electrical current in the water,” Enriquez said.
He said evidence “indicated electricity in the water could be a contributing factor to this Incident.
Asked if the boat was the cause of electricity in the water, Enriquez said, “it’s possible it was the boat . . . There were no issues on Saturday, we’re trying to figure out what exactly occurred.”
He called it “a complex case.
“At this point in the investigation, all information and evidence obtained provides no indication of foul play.”
The brothers and their wives were on the boat Saturday and Sunday, Enriquez said.
“They were members of the marina for about a month,” he added. “They were always out there on the boat with their families.
“We can’t 100% guarantee we have found the issue but we have found evidence there may be an electric issue that contributed as a factor to the drownings.”
Enriquez stressed the investigation is continuing. “We’re looking at the marina, we’re looking at the boat, we’re looking at the surrounding boats,” he said.