Documents detail new information after 6 year old drowns at bottom of pool

Niguel Hamilton passed away a few days after he was found at the bottom of a rec center pool. (Photo used with permission from family)

DAYTON, Ohio (WKEF/WRGT) - New documents are detailing more information after a 6-year-old drowned at the bottom of a local pool earlier this year.

Niguel Hamilton was found at the bottom of the Lohrey Rec Center indoor pool on July 12th.

He was taking a swim lesson at the time.

“He had probably taken about five all together,” Niguel’s grandfather, Willie Hamilton said to Fox 45 in July.

But on July 12th, Niguel’s body was found at the bottom the indoor pool.

Niguel was transported to the hospital immediately, but was pronounced dead on July 15. The Montgomery County Coroner's Office has said his official cause of death is drowning, and the incident has been ruled an accident.

The newly obtained police report reveals a swim instructor was giving a swim lesson to four children ranging from 6 to 9-years-old.

Niguel was one of the four.

There were also at least two other lifeguards present.

According to documents, the swim instructor said all four kids line up on the south side of the pool in the 10 foot section.

In the report, the instructor said he assisted Hamilton with swimming from the south deep end to the north shallow end.

The report goes on to say the instructor told Hamilton to hold on to the the wall until he and the other juveniles were all on that side as well.

But when the instructor returned to the north side of the pool, where he had left Niguel, he did not see him.

"He always said Papa I’m going to try hard, I’m not going to hold onto that rail, I'm going to swim,” Willie Hamilton told said of his grandson in July.

The report said a lifeguard checked the pool and did not see the victim and then asked Niguel's grandfather, Willie Hamilton, if he had seen his grandson get out of the pool.

“They’re going to ask me where’s he at?” said Willie Hamilton. “You know I’m like what do you mean where is he, he’s in the pool.”

Willie reports he was searching for his grandson in and outside of the Rec Center for about 8-10 minutes until a lifeguard returned to the pool area and spotted Niguel under 10 feet of water to the left of the diving board.

The lifeguard reportedly jumped in and retrieved the 6 -year-old, pulling him to the surface, and started to do CPR.

The police report the swim instructors and lifeguards say they couldn't see the bottom of the pool clearly there was a glare and the water was particularly cloudy.

Witnesses echoed similar comments.

Investigators returned to the pool the very next day and saw similar conditions, saying perception was greatly distorted.

In the report police said the center does have surveillance cameras but they weren't working that day.

Officials say there was no evidence of any tampering with the cameras or data.

Fox 45 has asked the city of Dayton several times over the last month if there has been any staff changes or changes to the swim lesson programs. The city has yet to comment.



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