The Mississippi Department of Corrections has identified the victim in an inmate worker accident this morning as 33-year-old Mireyel Scott of Leflore County.
Scott was serving time at the Harrison County Community Corrections Work Center in Gulfport and was mowing grass around a nature trail at Coffee Creek when the mishap occurred just before 10 a.m.
Coroner Gary Hargrove said he was wearing a seat belt while riding a mower when ground near the creek gave way and the mower flipped and landed in the creek on top of him. Hargrove said he was pinned underneath the mower and workers used a Bob-Cat to pull the mower out of the water.
An autopsy will be performed, but Hargrove said the victim was either crushed or drowned.
Scott was working for a city beautification crew at the Clower-Thornton Nature Area off East Railroad Street just west of Texas Avenue. He was mowing about a quarter-mile north of a roadside parking area where nature lovers enter the trail over a walking bridge.
The coroner said workers performed CPR to no avail.
Police Chief Alan Weatherford called it “a sad day for the city. Our hearts go out to the family of the deceased.”
Weatherford said counseling was being made available for workers who were at the park.
Read more in Friday’s editions of the Sun Herald.