Life and Death > Death Details

Drowning in a frozen lake, help please!


I need some details from y'all about a murder I have playing out in the first chapter, the murder to begin all murders, if you will.

This body would have drowned in a lake in the winter, stayed in the water all winter, then all summer, then washed back up the next winter. So a whole freeze-thaw cycle. I think I can piece together the look of the corpse, but I'm wondering if a coroner would be able to tell the length of time he's been dead just by looking at him. Maybe he could guess? I'll take any and all opinions. Thank you!

Dave Freas:
I don't know that a body would stay in the lake unnoticed that long - unless the lake is isolated and very rarely visited by people or it's in the Arctic.

Once the water warmed up in the spring and summer, the body would begin to decay, bloating up and rising to the surface of the lake and sure to be seen (and smelled) by anyone coming to the lake.

Throughout the body's time in the lake, fish and other life forms in the lake would feast on the body. Fingers, toes, nose, eyes, and tongue would be the first to go followed by other areas of the body.


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