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Body Found in Creek Near Where Police Say Novato Man Jumped in on Dec. 24

Marin County Coroner is investigating whether body found in Corte Madera Creek Monday night was the 20-year-old Novato man who allegedly fled a traffic stop by jumping into the creek on Christmas Eve.

Three weeks after a Novato man allegedly fled a traffic stop in Kentfield by jumping into nearby Corte Madera Creek, authorities pulled a body from the creek Monday night just a few hundred yards from where the Dec. 24 traffic stop occurred, authorities said.

The body has not yet been identified, but the Marin County Sheriff's Coroner's Division is investigating if it is Anthony Donelson, the 23-year-old man who has been missing since the early morning hours of Christmas Eve. Ross Police said Donelson had been stopped on suspicion of drunken driving on Sir Francis Drake Blvd. at College Ave. but immediately fled down College before jumping a fence and leaping into the creek.

Police said they followed Donelson as he swam away until they reached a point they couldn’t follow him. In the days after Donelson went missing, authorities conducted multiple searches of the area, using sonar equipment to comb the waters. His family also issued a $5,000 reward to help find him. The search continued all the way out through Greenbrae and into the bay, Ross Police Chief Erik Masterson said.

Marin County Sheriff's Lt. Doug Pittman said deputies and Ross Police responded to a report of a body being seen in the creek at around 5:45 p.m. Monday just south of Stadium Ave., which ends at a pedestrian overpass of the creek leading to the campus of Kent Middle School.

Deputies and police located the body beneath the surface of the water and called in the Sheriff’s dive team and Kentfield Fire crews.

Pittman said the body was not identified nor was the gender determined. He said authorities didn’t examine the body, as the dive team placed it into a body bag below the surface of the water, lifted it out of the water using a ladder from a Kentfield Fire truck and immediately transported it to the coroner’s office.

Donelson grew up in Fairfax and San Anselmo and was living in Novato. He graduated from Sir Francis Drake High School.

Gigi Cruz January 15, 2013 at 07:14 AM
I feel sorry for the family. My condolences to the family and friends.
Jerome J Ghigliotti Jr January 15, 2013 at 02:11 PM
It is always a good idea to flee from the police - not. We look forward to the autopsy result as to blood alcohol level, and the DUI possibility.
NovatoGuy January 15, 2013 at 02:45 PM
The guy had a record. DUI and battery. http://www.marinij.com/novato/ci_22270469/novato-man-who-fled-police-corte-madera-creek
Mark Burnham January 15, 2013 at 02:58 PM
Jerome sometimes you need to zip your mouth here. A local family, reading this local source of news ect.. is mourning the loss of their brother and/or child. Your comments here are inappropriate considering the timing. I've flagged your comment and hoping that Patch sees fit to remove your comment.
NovatoGuy January 15, 2013 at 03:22 PM
I understand what Mark is saying. However, I would like to respectfully point out that this kid had not been pulled over, perhaps this kid would have killed some innocent person due to his (suspected) drunk driving. And then another family would be in mourning. This kid had a record for DUI and battery. And then running from police after being stopped. I think Jerome's question is one many of us would have. And condolences to the family.
Steven Norwin January 15, 2013 at 03:33 PM
Hey Mark...Jerome's comments are not flag worthy. The leave comment area on here is for people to excercise their free speech. Maybe you should stop reading the Patch comments if they make you sad.
4thgenerationnovatonative January 15, 2013 at 05:10 PM
Mark, There are several people who regularly post here who have nothing more to offer than tedious, monotonous rants. Given that, while they may have some legitimate perspectives, due to their obvious lack of benevolence toward their fellow human beings, I have to feel sorry for them. They have to be very sad people in their own life to feel such a need to disparage others in order to make them feel better or superior. It’s a sad commentary on our society as a whole. I pray for those who are so discontented.
Devin January 15, 2013 at 05:12 PM
Regardless of what he did, there is a dead young man that had his life taken too early. People make bad choices. I am so sorry to the family of this young man. He was also a high school friend of my boyfriend. I didn't know him, but he was a good guy according to everyone else. R.I.P.
NovatoGuy January 15, 2013 at 06:43 PM
People certainly make bad choices. The problem is when these bad choices affect, hurt, and kill other people. Such as drunk driving. A bad choice? Hitting some innocent person? Through either battery or running them over? Or both? Lots of bad choices made by this young man. Certainly a tragedy, and he seems to have had a lot of people who cared about him. Too bad this couldn't have been prevented somehow. Condolences to the family and friends.
William Bertram January 16, 2013 at 06:03 AM
The level of heartless ignorance in your comments is truly astounding. "...had he not been pulled over, perhaps this kid would have killed some innocent person..." Seriously?? That is not 'Logic'! That is hypothetical conjecturing; like me saying: "Good thing so many Palestinian children were killed, or they might have grown up to to kill Israelis". See how profoundly flawed that kind of thinking is? How demeaning and insensitive it is? Hypothetical analysis of future possibilities is NOT an adult or intelligent way for justifying a genuine lack of real HUMAN emotion!~
William Bertram January 16, 2013 at 06:08 AM
Thank you for the warm and incredibly moving sensitivity you have shown here regarding the death of this young man... ...Not!~

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