Boy, 4, drowns in Lake Lanier

LAKE LANIER - A 4-year-old Hall County boy drowned in Lake Lanier on Wednesday after he wandered away from home.

David Alex Taylor of Oakwood was reported missing from his Lanier Boulevard home at 2 p.m. Wednesday, said Cpt. Jeff Strickland, spokesman for the Hall County Sheriff's Office. His parents told officials the child had wandered away from home while playing with his dog. Strickland said he was not sure how long the child had been missing.

Hall County sheriff's deputies searched the area on foot, the Georgia State Patrol searched by helicopter and the Department of Natural Resources searched the shore of Lake Lanier by boat, Strickland said.

Witnesses reported seeing a child matching the missing boy's description on a boat dock about a half-mile from the child's house. Deputies discovered the child's dog at that dock, Strickland said.

At 3:50 p.m., the Hall County Sheriff's Office dive team recovered the child, who was submerged in about 12 feet of 63-degree water. The child was not breathing, Strickland said. He was rushed to the Northeast Georgia Medical Center, where he later died.

Strickland said the drowning appears accidental, and investigators do not suspect foul play. The incident remains under investigation by the Hall County Sheriff's Office Criminal Investigations Division.