Adlai Kugblenu-June, 2010



A frantic search turned tragic yesterday after an eight-year-old boy was found drowned in a pond between Jamestown Road and Potomac Drive, near the Spring Ridge condo complex.

Acting Somerset County Prosecutor A. Peter DeMarco Jr. said in a press release that Bernards Township Police responded to a 9-1-1 call at 2:26 p.m. on Sunday, June 27 reporting a missing child, Adlai Kugblenu of Potomac Drive.

“Responding officers spoke with the victim’s father, Mr. Kugblenu, who stated that at approximately 2 p.m. he noticed his son was missing from the residence and immediately began to search for his son outside the residence and near the retention pond with negative results prior to contacting police,” DeMarco said. “Officers immediately began a neighborhood canvass which included the retention pond located near the victim’s residence with negative results.”

The police called in a request for assistance after the failed initial search, according to DeMarco’s report. Several neighboring police units, the Basking Ridge and Liberty Corner Fire and First Aid squads, the Somerset County Dive Team and other county search and rescue units responded to the scene.

“Divers from the Somerset County Dive Team subsequently located Adlai Kugblenu at the bottom of the pond near the floating aerator fountain, which was located near the center of the pond,” DeMarco said. “Kugblenu was pronounced dead at the scene and a positive identification was subsequently made.”

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