Body found in frozen pond near Ada - KTEN.com - Texoma news, weather and sports

Body found in frozen pond near Ada

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The body of Colton Pennington was found in a frozen pond near Ada. (KTEN) The body of Colton Pennington was found in a frozen pond near Ada. (KTEN)

PONTOTOC COUNTY, Okla. -- The body of 20-year-old Colton Pennington was found in a frozen pond outside Ada on Monday.

Authorities said Pennington had last been seen at a New Year's Eve party on Sunday night. Others at the party told investigators they thought someone came and picked him up.

An oilfield worker discovered Pennington's clothing and cell phone near a pumpjack adjacent to the pond, located about 12 miles southeast of Ada.

The worker used that phone to call Pennington's father.

"He was concerned about the whereabouts of his son," Pontotoc County Sheriff John Christian said. "They hadn't heard from him, and with those items being found he certainly thought that was unusual."

About 50 people joined in a search party all day Monday, understanding that Pennington might have been exposed to sub-freezing temperatures for hours.

"Just before dark, one of the searchers found some barefoot footprints on the ice on a pond, and then noticed that there was also a hole in the ice out on the pond," Christian said.

A body was found in the icy water a short time later.

"I don't know whether he was just walking, you know, with certainly no light," the sheriff said. "Whether he just walked out on the ice not knowing he was walking out there, or he walked out there as a part of the hypothermia to also get cool."

Christian explained that when the human body becomes hypothermic, it actually starts telling the brain that you're hot instead of cold, which explains why Pennington may have stripped down to get into the water. The temperature dropped to the single digits on the morning of January 1.

"Without a lot of clothing on, you're not going to last out there a long time in that weather," Christian said, adding that foul play is not suspected.

Pennington's remains were taken to the medical examiner's office to rule on the exact cause of death.

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