Man found dead in West Chester Township pond had drowned, coroner rules

Kelvin Tabiri was 19 years old
Posted at 1:39 PM, Jul 11, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-11 14:29:37-04

WEST CHESTER TOWNSHIP, Ohio -- The Butler County coroner determined a man found dead in a pond Monday afternoon had drowned.

Divers pulled Kelvin Tabiri's body from the retention pond at Frontgate Outlet Center at about 4:45 p.m. They initially were called because it appeared a vehicle had gone from the parking lot through a hedgerow and into the water.

Tabiri's body wasn't inside the car when a tow truck pulled it out. The divers found him about 30 minutes later.

The coroner's office has not yet determined whether his death was accidental or otherwise.

Township spokeswoman Barb Wilson said Monday it's not clear when the vehicle may have gone into the water.

There were two similar incidents of cars driving into ponds in the area in recent years.

In May 2016, a good Samaritan saved a driver from a retention pond just down the road, at JP Flooring.

And in 2009, another driver died after driving into a retention pond only a few miles away on Plum Tree Drive. Patrice Battle, 33, was missing for four days when her body and car were spotted in the water.