Medical personnel at a hospital pronounced a 22-month-old boy dead after a passerby found him in Lake Whetstone at Montgomery Village Friday, Montgomery County Police said.
Spokesperson Capt. Paul Starks said that staff from Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Baltimore determined Sunday that the cause of death was accidental drowning.
Starks said that the investigation is ongoing.
According to police, 22-month-old Malik Bojang of the 18700 block of Pier Point Place in Gaithersburg was at a playground interacting with other children under the supervision of a family member when he wandered off. A family member called police around 7:30 p.m. and reported the child was missing.
“What the caller told police is that they could not find the boy. It had just been a few minutes. (The caller) was looking for him,” Starks said.
Minutes later, police received a separate call from a passerby who had just pulled a child from Lake Whetstone and was performing resuscitation on him, Starks said. The child turned out to be Bojang.
Police arrived to find the child unresponsive, Starks said. Fire and rescue personnel arrived minutes later, took over resuscitation efforts and took the boy to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Starks said he has no information about the identity of the passerby.
Montgomery County Fire and Rescue spokesperson Pete Piringer advises parents and caregivers to keep close watch on small children when they go outside, especially as warmer weather approaches.
“Of course, this time of year, when it’s nice out and people are out and have access to these areas, it’s potentially dangerous (for small children),” Piringer said.
He added they should be extra watchful of the children near busy roads and bodies of water.
“Anybody that has young kids or grandkids or … infants, (with) the potential to wander off, they have to be vigilant, use help of family members,” Piringer said. “Whether it be (near) a highway or busy road or any kind of water situation.”