A 23-year-old woman found dead in a White Center pond on Sept. 7 apparently drowned after chasing a soccer ball into the water, according to the King County Sheriff’s Office. The woman, Victoria McMullen of El Cajon, Calif., had been visiting Seattle after a fight with her husband, with whom she had a child six months ago.
An elderly woman holding a garage sale at the Coronado Springs apartment complex next to Mallard Lake said she saw McMullen playing around the water’s edge with the soccer ball on the evening of Sept. 2, according to a sheriff’s release.
The same witness said she saw McMullen dive into the water and swim toward the middle of the lake. A short time later, the witness saw her waving her hands in the air but not yelling for help, making her unsure as to whether McMullen was in distress or not.
By the time a neighbor the witness contacted checked the lake, they didn’t see anyone and the ball was floating at the far end of the pond. They believed at the time the woman had gotten herself out of the lake.
The drowning victim’s father eventually called her husband about her whereabouts after not receiving the daily phone call he usually got from her. Her husband said they just had a fight and that she asked to be taken to San Diego International Airport, from which he suspected she flew to Seattle. McMullen’s husband, who is in the military, had previously been stationed in Washington.
The El Cajon Police Department found no foul play at the husband’s home and confirmed that he was at work in California all week. The police also found that Victoria McMullen had flown to Phoenix and then, on Sept. 2, to Seattle. A call from the El Cajon police to King County Sheriff’s Office confirmed McMullen’s identity.
Sheriff’s detectives said there were no obvious signs of trauma to the body, but they are awaiting toxicology results from the King County Medical Examiner’s Office.