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Mystery surrounds deceased youth pulled from water in Wallingford

Mystery surrounds deceased youth pulled from water in Wallingford

reporter photo

WALLINGFORD — Police detectives continue to investigate the death of a missing teen with the help of state and federal agencies, but so far little information is known about the victim.

Nolvin Diaz, 17, was pulled from Community Lake on May 3 after kayakers came across his partially submerged body.

The death has been ruled a homicide. According to the chief medical examiner, the cause of death was “blunt and sharp injuries of head and neck.”  A ligature was also used.

Police Chief William Wright said Monday that there’s currently no known threat to any other specific person or the general public.

“The case is very active and ongoing,” he said. “There’s not much more I’m going to say about that.”

Lt. Cheryl Bradley said Friday that local and state police were staged near the Wallingford Senior Center for a total of approximately 26 hours, from shortly after noon on May 3 until mid-afternoon on May 4. The senior center is located on Washington Street, just east of Community Lake. 

State police utilized a dive team in recovery efforts. It’s unclear where along the lake banks the body was found.

The Quinnipiac River Linear Trail is just west of the lake.

State Rep. Mary Mushinsky, who’s also co-chair of the trail advisory committee, said Monday that a couple of trail volunteers had been trimming trees along the river around the same time the body was discovered.

“It’s an area where we’re all used to being outdoors,” she said. “It’s normally a very peaceful place and we practice (kayaking) out there and look at the wildlife. It’s the same area where we normally go."

Little known about victim

Diaz was reported missing by relatives on April 25 and was last seen leaving his home around 8 p.m. on April 23.

Little is known about Diaz’s life, including where he went to school or if he was involved with community groups. Attempts by the Record-Journal to locate his family were unsuccessful.

School Superintendent Salvatore Menzo said there are no records of Diaz being a student in the school district. Several other area school systems and high schools also had no record of Diaz as a student, according to officials.

Diaz had never visited the Spanish Community of Wallingford, utilized the agency’s services or participated in any programs, said Adriana Rodriguez, SCOW executive director. SCOW’s facility is next to the Senior Center.

“We were saddened when we heard about this tragic event,” Rodriguez said via email. “We, of course, extend our condolences to his family and friends.”

Town Councilor Gina Morgenstein posted on Facebook Monday about Diaz’s country of origin and family status. Morgenstein said her “information was secondhand” and did not return a request for comment on its source.

LTakores@record-journal.comTwitter: @LCTakores