Dead man found buried in sand on South Florida beach

MARTIN COUNTY, Fla. — Deputies said that a man found dead on the beach and buried in sand was likely the victim of a tragic accident.

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A person walking along Rock Beach called deputies on Monday after seeing feet sticking out of the sand, WPTV reported.

“It was an unusual scene with his feet sticking out of the sand and then of course we had to dig down to find the body,” Martin County Sheriff William Snyder told WPTV. “It revealed some sand in his lungs.”

Deputies with the Martin County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release that no foul play was evident, and it appeared the man had died hours earlier when he got trapped underneath the sand. Detectives said that the victim was likely resting under a sand dune to get video of the sunrise when the dune collapsed, trapping him.

“Somehow while he was there, inexplicably, we don’t know why, that beach erosion, mountain of sand, collapsed on him,” Snyder told WPTV. “Obviously, he was unable to get out, and he expired.”

The victim was identified as Sean Nagel, 37, of Stuart, Treasure Coast Newspapers reported.

Investigators said toxicology tests were being performed as part of standard procedure, but that the tests “are not likely to change the outcome of this incident being a tragic accident.”