SJPD investigating man's death; van crash into pond

San Jose Police are investigating the death of a man found floating in a North San Jose pond as a fatal traffic collision, after a minvan crashed and was recovered from the water.

A neighbor's home surveillance video may provide new clues.

Video from Sammy Iskander's home surveillance system shows a white minivan at the intersection of Summerpark Court and Morrill Avenue. The time on the video is around 9:40 p.m. Tuesday night.

In the video, the minivan is seen running a red light narrowly missing another car before it speeds down the culdesac down an embankment. Four minutes later, two more cars drive by without stopping. Iskander didn't realize he had the video until Wednesday afternoon.

"It was too late," said Iskander. "I wish i could have seen it earlier."

At 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, police pulled a white minivan from the Helmsley Percolation Pond after someone saw the car partially submerged. A body was in the water.

"One of our sergeants went into the water and retrieved the body that was floating nearby," said Sgt. Enrique Garcia of San Jose Police. "He was pronounced deceased at the scene."

As a precautionary measure, homicide detectives were called out to investigate. San Jose Police are classifying the case as a crash unclear if it was an accident, a medical emergency or if drugs or alcohol played a role.

"It's rare," said Marty Grimes of the Santa Clara Valley Water District "We certainly don't like to see any tragedy like this."

The groundwater recharge pond is managed by the Santa Clara Valley Water District. Two weeks ago, the pond was dry because of the drought. It's now filled with roughly four feet of water. A hazmat team found no gas or oil leak from the car. There's no contamination with water quality since it's naturally filtered.

"It's too bad someone loses their life for speed and cannot see the gate," said Iskander.

Iskander and his son Leonard are hoping the City of San Jose will consider putting more lights in the neighborhood given not many drivers realize it's not a through street. They are thankful in this case no one else was hurt.

"There's other cars you see at night," said Neighbor Leonard Iskander. "So anytime the car could have hit somebody randomly."

The man's identity has not been released. An autopsy will provide details on the exact cause of death.