Police still have questions about drowning victim


Au­thor­it­ies have re­leased the iden­tity of a man who drowned in a Phil­adelphia po­lice of­ficer’s swim­ming pool earli­er this month, but ques­tions about his death re­main.

Mark Cum­mins, 45, died from an ac­ci­dent­al drown­ing, said Jeff Mor­an, a spokes­man for the city’s med­ic­al ex­am­iner. Cum­mins lived in the North­east’s 19136 ZIP code, but Mor­an de­clined to dis­close the vic­tim’s spe­cif­ic place of res­id­ence.

On Ju­ly 5, po­lice from the 8th dis­trict re­covered Cum­mins’ body from the bot­tom of an al­gae-filled pool in the back­yard of a home on the 2800 block of Winchester Ave. in Winchester Park. Capt. Jack Mc­Gin­nis of North­east De­tect­ives de­scribed Cum­mins as a “fam­ily friend” of the wo­man homeown­er, who is a Phil­adelphia po­lice lieu­ten­ant.

De­tect­ives re­covered sur­veil­lance video from the home. The foot­age shows Cum­mins swim­ming alone in the pool that night and dis­ap­pear­ing be­low the sur­face. “A few minutes later,” Mc­Gin­nis said, the homeown­er went to the pool area ap­par­ently look­ing for Cum­mins but did not see him in the murky wa­ter.

She called 911 at 10:53 p.m. Patrol of­ficers found Cum­mins at the bot­tom of the pool’s 9-foot “deep end” and pulled him to the deck. He was pro­nounced dead at the scene.

The Phil­adelphia Daily News named the homeown­er as Lt. Aisha Perry, who is as­signed to the po­lice de­part­ment’s dif­fer­en­tial po­lice re­sponse unit. The news­pa­per re­por­ted that the de­part­ment’s In­tern­al Af­fairs Bur­eau has been in­vest­ig­at­ing Perry since be­fore the drown­ing for an al­leged theft of pub­lic util­it­ies.

It is not known why Cum­mins would have been swim­ming in the dirty pool. The Daily News re­por­ted that a vodka bottle was also found in the pool and that de­tect­ives sought and ob­tained a war­rant be­fore re­cov­er­ing the sur­veil­lance video from the home.

The res­ults of tox­ic­o­logy tests on Cum­mins are pending. ••


You can reach at wkenny@bsmphilly.com.

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