[UPDATE 10:45 a.m.] Body Found Near Whitethorn Confirmed to Be Missing Man

CaptureLt. Wayne Hanson of the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office has confirmed that the body of Scott Fitzgerald was found near Whitethorn yesterday. The man had been reported missing. His dog and vehicle were found near Whitethorn.

Scanner traffic indicates that the body was reported about 2 p.m.

A witness said that south of Whitethorn a large group of law enforcement vehicles, fire engines and other agency vehicles were seen near the Mattole River in the afternoon. We believe the two incidents are related.

UPDATE 10:45 a.m.: Press release from the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office.

On 08-13-2015 at 1:55 p.m. the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office received a telephone call from a citizen, regarding a deceased subject they had found off the Briceland- Whitethorn Road. Deputies arrived on scene at 2:45 p.m. about spoke to the citizens, who found the deceased subject. They reported they work as fish biologists and had discovered the deceased body in a creek about 50 yards to the west of the Whitethorn Road.

Deputies then walked down to the scene, which was about ½ miles to the north of the Mendocino/ Humboldt County line. The decomposing body was lying in the creek bed and it appeared that the human remains had been there for a while.

The Humboldt County Coroner’s Office responded to the scene and took possession of the body. The body was later identified through tattoos and identification located in the pants pocket as the missing person, 44 year old Scott Joseph Fitzgerald.

An autopsy is pending for exact cause of death.



  • Mercy Me, Mabel!

    To family and other loved ones, my condolences.

  • Sylvia Christianson

    How very sad

  • Condolences to Wayne’s family and friends. Think there are worse places to die than in the mountains with “the earth for a soft pillow, the sky for a canopy.”

    “People do not die for us immediately, but remain bathed in a sort of aura of life which bears no relation to true immortality but through which they continue to occupy our thoughts in the same way as when they were alive. It is as though they were traveling abroad.”
    –Marcel Proust

  • R.I.P. Mr. Fitzgerald. My condolencence to your loved ones.

  • A decomposing body in the creek ? Please help Protect the Mattole and its Salmon by storing water in the Winter .

  • I will miss you scotty! I know when it’s my turn to reach heaven you will be there to greet me with your shining smile. Give Cecilia and Cindy big hugs from us! I love you brother

  • My sincere condolences to the family and friends of Mr. Fitzgerald. My heart broke when I heard the news.
    May you find peace in memory and love for Scott.

    Any update on cause of death? Was it of natural causes or should the people of Whitethorn be concerned about going to the river or camping out that way.

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