Man whose body was found along MLK Shoreline identified

OAKLAND (BCN) — A man whose body was found along the Martin Luther King Jr. Regional Shoreline in Oakland last week has been identified as 46-year-old Eric Dwayne Smith of Oakland, an East Bay Regional Park District spokeswoman said Tuesday.

Investigators are considering Smith’s death as “suspicious” but haven’t classified it as a homicide because his cause of death hasn’t yet been determined, park district spokeswoman Carolyn Jones said.

Smith’s body was found in mud flats off the shoreline at about 11:50 a.m. on Jan. 18 by volunteers who were participating in an all-day cleanup event for Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

A small group had wandered away and was cleaning up trash along the shoreline when they discovered his body just off Arrowhead Marsh, Jones said.

Smith’s body was partially clothed and partially decomposed, she said.

His cause of death won’t be determined until toxicology tests are completed, a process that could take several weeks, Jones said.

Investigators are trying to determine if Smith died along the shoreline where he was found or if he died somewhere else and was later moved to the shoreline area, she said.

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