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Another body found in Austin lake following fears of a serial killer

A fifth man has been found dead in Lady Bird Lake in Austin, Texas, in the past six months, according to police in the Texas capital.

His identity was not immediately available.

“This case is still under investigation,” a department spokesman told Fox News Digital Wednesday. “No further details are available at this time.”

Four other men have turned up dead in the lake, which is actually a portion of the Colorado River running through downtown Austin, according to authorities. They have repeatedly downplayed speculation that a serial killer may be behind the deaths.

Then, it turned out the city did have an active serial killer, according to prosecutors – but he had nothing to do with the bodies in the water.

Rainey Street, Austin Friday night.

The downtown strip in Austin, Texas, is home to some of the city’s nightlife, and several recent drownings in the city involved men who were last seen there. (Matteo Cina/Fox News Digital)

Raul Meza Jr. shot a man in 1975, killed a girl in 1982 and allegedly confessed to two new murders earlier this month as Texas police continue to eye him in other cold cases.

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“I can’t say that this guy did anything at Lady Bird Lake, and I can’t even say for sure there is a serial killer at Lady Bird Lake – but what it looks like to me is that there are suspicious deaths at Lady Bird Lake,” criminal profiler John Kelly said after Meza’s arrest. 

A sign warns of poor lighting conditions at night on a hike and bike trail along Lady Bird Lake

A sign warns of poor lighting conditions at night on a hike and bike trail along Lady Bird Lake that passes the end of Rainey Street on Sunday, April 2, 2023, in downtown Austin, Texas. (Aaron E. Martinez/American-Statesman/USA TODAY NETWORK)

The Lady Bird Lake deaths have involved men in or around their 30s who had been drinking on Rainey Street and were later found dead in the water. However, police have said they do not suspect foul play in any of them.

Clifton Axtell, 40, was identified as the man found dead in the same stretch of water on March 5. Jonathan Honey, 33, was found on April 1, a day after he was last seen at a food truck on Rainey Street. John Christopher Hays-Clark, 30, was also discovered in April, washed up near a dam about two miles down river from where the others were found.

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Authorities have increased safety measures around Rainey Street and the Lady Bird Lake waterfront, adding fencing, lighting and increasing patrols to prevent people from slipping into the river. However, some have questioned whether “roofies” or other incapacitating drugs have been used in connection with the deaths.

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