A 49-year-old Alexandria man drowned on Lake Burgen southeast of Alexandria Tuesday evening. On Wednesday evening, the Midwest Medical Examiner's Officer identified the man as Brian William Carlson.
The Douglas County Sheriff's Office received a couple of 911 calls around 5:25 p.m. July 23 from a distraught woman, according to a news release. Dispatchers were eventually able to determine that the woman was calling from the Lake Burgen public access area and within minutes a sheriff's deputy was on scene.
The deputy located the woman and was told that Carlson had been swimming near the public access boat ramp but had not resurfaced, according to the news release. The Douglas County Sheriff's Dive Rescue Team, North Ambulance and LifeLink III helicopter were all called to the scene. Personnel began a water search for Carlson and Lifelink assisted by doing an aerial water search.
Shortly before 6 p.m., Carlson's body was found underwater east of the Lake Burgen public boat access ramp, about 50 feet from shore in about 10 feet of water. Rescue personnel immediately started resuscitation efforts as Carlson was brought to shore. Once on shore, personnel from North Ambulance and LifeLink took over, but resuscitation efforts were unsuccessful.
Carlson was later transported to the Midwest Medical Examiner's Office in Ramsey for cause of death determination.
The case remains under investigation by the sheriff's office and the Midwest Medical Examiner's Office.
This is the sixth drowning in Douglas County in the past three years. The others were in: Lake Miltona, June 11, 2016; Lake Andrew, June 20, 2016; Lake L'Homme Dieu, Aug. 27, 2016; Lake Agnes, April 12, 2017; and the channel between Lakes Cowdry and Darling, April 28, 2017.
Since 2014, there have been a total of seven drownings – three less than the total number of fatal vehicle crashes in Douglas County.