Thu. Jul 25th, 2024

The Irvine Police Department (IPD) located a 20-year-old missing male deceased in the flood control channel next to 3512 Michelson.

Christian Nathang Cruz, a resident of Irvine, was reported missing at about 11:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 21. Cruz’s mother dropped him off at L.A. Fitness, located at 3960 Barranca, at 6:30 p.m. When she went to pick him up at 9:30 p.m., he was missing. She searched for him for about 2 hours using a phone tracking application which showed his phone in the area of L.A. Fitness. When she was not able to locate him, she called IPD. She informed officers Christian was developmentally disabled but able to verbally communicate.

Several officers responded to search for Cruz, checking areas in and around his last known location, including his favorite places to visit. This morning, Cruz’s phone was located inside the men’s locker room at the gym. A review of the surveillance footage at L.A. Fitness showed him leaving the location alone, at about 8:00 p.m. last night. He was seen walking towards the San Diego Creek Trail in an eastern direction. About 15-20 minutes later, he was seen walking back towards L.A. Fitness and down into the flood control channel by himself.

With this new information, officers followed the channel south and located Cruz’s body at 11:56 a.m. today, approximately 3 miles from where he was last seen. The Orange County Fire Authority (OCFA) and members of the Urban Search and Rescue Team (USAR) responded to recover Cruz from the water. We are sad to report this outcome and wish the Cruz family comfort and strength.

Christian Nathan Cruz was born March 18, 2003 in Jacksonville, Florida. He was a 7 month premature baby and was born with developmental delayed, poor swallowing and sucking. He was fed through a G-Tube, according to a GoFundMe page set up by his family. They are raising money to cover the costs of Christian’s funeral and memorial services due to their financial difficulty as his passing was completely unexpected.

If you have any information related to this incident, please contact Detective Mudassar Mahmood at 949-724-7244 or email

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The New Santa Ana blog has been covering news, events and politics in Santa Ana since 2009.

By Editor

The New Santa Ana blog has been covering news, events and politics in Santa Ana since 2009.

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