SUPPORT THIS INDEPENDENT JOURNALISM
The article you’re about to read is from our reporters doing their important work — investigating, researching, and writing their stories. We want to provide informative and inspirational stories that connect you to the people, issues and opportunities within our community. Journalism requires lots of resources. Today, our business model has been interrupted by the pandemic; the vast majority of our advertisers’ businesses have been impacted. That’s why the SC Times is now turning to you for financial support. Learn more about our new Insider’s program here. Thank you.

By Eric Heinz

Update, 11:10 a.m., Nov. 15: At 11 a.m. on Sunday, Nov. 15, Orange County Sheriff’s Department officials confirmed the man found dead on Saturday, Nov. 14 in a drainage channel near the baseball fields at San Clemente High School is Nick Stevens, 22, who had been reported missing in San Clemente since Nov. 6.

The family of the deceased has been notified, said Carrie Braun, public affairs manager for OCSD.

The cause of death is yet to be determined.

See missing person story: www.sanclementetimes.com/missing-person-nick-stevens-22/

No foul play is suspected at this time, and an autopsy will be conducted by Orange County Coroner’s Office on Monday. A press release sent by OCSD yesterday said it is being investigated as a “suspicious” death.

Stevens had been working in San Clemente for the last two months at C2 Collaborative. He had recently graduated from West Virginia University.

People with information related to this incident are asked to call 714.647.7000 or OC Crime Stoppers to remain anonymous at 1.855.TIP.OCCS (847.6227).

Original Story: Body of Unidentified Dead Man Found in Drainage Channel Near SCHS

Orange County Sheriff's Department officials surround a perimiter where a dead body was found around noon Saturday, Nov. 14 in a drainage channel between SCHS baseball fields and the McDonald's on the 600 block of Avenida Pico in San Clemente. Photo: Eric Heinz
Orange County Sheriff’s Department officials surround a perimiter where an unidentified dead man  was found around noon on Saturday, Nov. 14 in a drainage channel between SCHS baseball fields and the McDonald’s on the 600 block of Avenida Pico in San Clemente. Photo: Eric Heinz

Updated: 4:22 p.m. on Nov. 14

By Eric Heinz

The body of a man yet to be identified was found by Orange County Sheriff’s Department around noon on Saturday, Nov. 14 in a drainage channel between the San Clemente High School baseball fields and the McDonald’s off the 600 block of Avenida Pico.
The body was found by a K-9 Search and Rescue team canvassing the area since Monday, Nov. 9 in search of Nick Stevens, 22, who had been reported missing since Nov. 6. Sheriff’s deputies said they are not speculating whether the body is that of the missing person, and additional details have not yet been released.
OCSD officials also said they could not provide any information as to age or other identifying factors at this time.
“Because of the condition of the body, we’re unable to tell quite a few factors, so we really won’t be able to (report) anything until the Coroner’s Office is able to examine the body,” said Carrie Braun, public affairs manager for OCSD, adding it could be Monday before a determination is made. “They canvassed the west side of the Interstate 5 freeway because that was where the missing person was said to be last seen, and when they couldn’t find anything they moved over to the east side of the freeway.”
Homicide investigators have also been dispatched to the area to assess the incident.

OCSD homicide investigators and deputies comb the area near the SCHS baseball fields Saturday, Nov. 14 where the body of an unidentified person was found. Photo: Eric Heinz
OCSD homicide investigators and deputies comb the area near the SCHS baseball fields Saturday, Nov. 14 where the body of an unidentified person was found. Photo: Eric Heinz

“Any time a dead body is found in Orange County, the homicide investigation team responds, just in case we end up with a situation like this,” Braun said. “Since Monday, the detectives have been working tirelessly to get any information as possible on the missing person, such as surveillance video from surrounding businesses, any information they could find.”

OCSD Twitter

Braun said nothing had been found regarding the missing person since he was last seen. OCSD Airship Duke had been canvassing the area as well, but she said it would be very hard for the helicopter to see a body from that angle.
As of 3:30 p.m. Saturday, OCSD Search and Rescue officials were in the area trying to retrieve the body.
Editor’s Note: This is a developing story. More information will be released once it becomes available. Stay tuned.

BECOME AN INSIDER TODAY
Trustworthy, accurate and reliable local news stories are more important now than ever. Support our newsroom by making a contribution and becoming a subscribing member today.

About The Author Staff

comments (4)

  • Is there going to be a follow-up story to this? What was the cause of death?

    • Hi Julie,

      The toxicology report is still being conducted. We will do an update as soon as we get any information. In the meantime, you can view the status update at the Orange County Coroner’s website under updated press releases.

      Thank you,

      Eric Heinz, city editor

  • any update on the tox report?

  • I’d also like to know what killed the “known homeless” man at Poche. I live in a North Beach neighborhood and I can tell you it’s not a safe place. The junkies use the trash shed to shoot up, there are bums sleeping in the bushes along the trail, and you know the state of 7-11. For the first time in my 20 years as a resident I recently decided against a walk alone at night because I felt unsafe.

comments (4)

Your email address will not be published.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>