Public’s help sought in suspicious death at Martin Luther King Jr. Regional Shoreline in Oakland

OAKLAND (BCN) — The East Bay Regional Park District Wednesday asked for the public’s help in a suspicious death case in which a man was found dead along the Martin Luther King Jr. Regional Shoreline in Oakland earlier this year.

The body of the man, identified as 46-year-old Eric Dwayne Smith, was discovered at 11:50 a.m. on Jan. 18 near Arrowhead Marsh by volunteers who were participating in a Martin Luther King Jr. Day cleanup event, according to the park district.

The Oakland transient’s body was partially decomposed when it was found. The Alameda County coroner’s bureau reported that the probable cause of death was a drug overdose but police are investigating the death as suspicious, according to the park district.

Investigators have been trying to determine if Smith died in the shoreline area or was moved there.

He was last seen Jan. 10 in the 82nd Avenue area, according to the park district.”

“We’re hoping to talk to anyone who might have seen him in the last few weeks of his life,” East Bay Regional Park District police Detective Janet Harkness said in a statement.

Anyone with potentially relevant information is asked to call the park district’s anonymous tip line at (510) 690-6521.

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