Banks County Sheriff Charles Chapman said Aug. 3 Hart was with an adult and two juveniles at the lake. [Banks County] 911 received a call yesterday at approximately 4:30 p.m. Upon arrival the first [Sheriff's] officer said the witness stated to him the three juveniles were in the water.
"They started swimming across a pretty good part of the lake and one of them [the drowning victim] he turned from the others and started to come back," Chapman said. "He got within a few feet of shore. He began to struggle and went down in about 11 feet of water and never came back up." The other boys could not reach Hart in time," Chapman said.
Chapman said a Jackson County dive team recovered the body at approximately 9:45 p.m.
Banks County Assistant Coroner John Wayne Abernathy was on the scene and because of the circumstances of death, the body was sent to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation Crime Lab, Chapman said.
The lake supplies water to Banks County and portions of the shoreline are private property, Chapman said. Swimming in the lake is illegal and signs are posted at different areas, Chapman said.
The swimmers accessed the lake through private property, Chapman said, and walked over a very steep hill and went through woods to get to the lake.
Chapman said his department has received reports of people swimming in the lake and "officers have run people out of there [the lake]."
Since the lake covers "several acres," Chapman said, it is difficult to patrol.