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posted: 3/5/2012 7:06 PM

Waukegan High student dies after jumping into Lake Michigan

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A 17-year-old Waukegan High School student drowned Monday afternoon after witnesses said he jumped off a pier at the Waukegan Yacht Club.

Rasheed Mariano of Waukegan was seen walking through the Yacht Club parking lot alone about 1 p.m. before he began running down the pier, according to authorities. The Waukegan High School Washington Campus student then jumped into Lake Michigan, where he was found about 18 feet underwater within a half-hour, according to police.

A search team found Mariano about 10 feet north of the pier, according to the Lake County sheriff's department.

Mariano was taken to Vista East where he was pronounced dead shortly after.

Lake County Coroner Artis Yancey said the cause of death was an apparent drowning, but authorities continue to investigate the circumstances.

"Our hearts and prayers go out to his family and friends," said Sheriff Mark Curran in a written statement.

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