Body found in canal is missing Shockoe Bottom man

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Police have shut the case on a missing Shockoe Bottom man.

Police identified the body found in the Kanawha Canal this weekend as 23 year-old Matthew Williams.

Right now police do not suspect any foul play in Williams' death and are not looking for any suspects.

Three men were arrested for allegedly burglarizing his apartment the same night he went missing. Police say that burglary and Williams' disappearance look to be unrelated.

Williams went missing December 13th. He was last seen outside the Hat Factory in Shockoe Bottom.

Police have suspected Williams may have ended up in the canal. This weekend their hunch proved to be on target - a passerby spotted Williams' body. Now the big mystery is just how Williams' ended up in the water.

"I wish we had an eyewitness," said Major Steve Drew of the Richmond Police Department.  "We have a lot of the pieces of the puzzle that frame a pretty good picture for us, but exactly how he got there, it's not black and white. Did he stumble? Slip and fall?"

The medical examiner is still working on Williams' autopsy, but police say there were no signs of trauma. An official cause of death could take several weeks.

"We stayed on this until we found Matthew," Drew said. "That's what we told the family we'd do. I wish we had a different circumstances, but again, at least it brings them some closure."

Williams recently moved to Richmond from Raleigh. The three men arrested are facing conspiracy to commit burglary charges.

Dive teams recently searched the Kanawha Canal for Williams. Police asked public utilities to speed up its regularly scheduled draining of the canal to help with the search.

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