The following is a press release issued by the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office. This has not been proven in a court of law and any individuals described should be presumed innocent until proven guilty:
On 7-31-2023 at about 4:40 PM, Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office Deputies along with California Highway Patrol (CHP) and Fire Personnel were dispatched to the area of MM 12 on Highway 162 in Dos Rios, CA for a possible drowning. Sheriff’s Office Deputies began an emergency response with lights and sirens.
Prior to Sheriff’s Office personnel arriving at the scene, a CHP and a Round Valley Tribal Officer arrived and observed a subject in the river. Both the CHP Officer and Tribal Officer immediately jumped into the river to try to save the individual. Sheriff’s Office and Fire personnel arrived shortly thereafter. Officers were unable to reach the individual because he was in a very deep section of the river.
The Little Lake Fire Department’s swift-water rescue unit responded to assist. At approximately 6:00 PM, the swift-water rescue team was able to retrieve the deceased individual, who was later identified as Anthony Sasso (54 years old). Sasso’s next of kin was notified as a part of this investigation.
During the coroner’s investigation, Sheriff’s Office Deputies learned Sasso had gone to the river with a friend. A witness observed Sasso jumping off a rock, about 25-30 feet above the river surface, into a deep section of the river (approximately 20-25 feet deep). After jumping from the rock into the river, Sasso appeared to be in distress and sunk to the bottom or the river. Due to there being no cellular services in the area, road workers working in the area were notified and emergency services were requested.