Body of man who was swept away by Carlsbad floodwaters ID’d

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CARLSBAD, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico State Police have identified the body of a man who died after being swept away by floodwaters in Carlsbad.

Police said it’s unclear why 63-year-old John Paul Koch drove past barricades and into rapid moving floodwaters over the roadway.

Koch’s vehicle overturned several times and was swept away in the Dark Canyon Draw Arroyo.

Police said rescue efforts were unsuccessful because of the high volume and intensity of the flood.

Crews delayed recovering the body, waiting for floodwaters to recede to a safe level for personnel to enter the water.

State Police and members of the Carlsbad Fire Department flew a drone Wednesday afternoon in an area near a low water crossing and pinpointed the spot where Koch’s body washed up.

Divers recovered the body around 7 p.m.

Koch’s body was sent to the Office of the Medical Investigator in Albuquerque for an autopsy.

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