Missing Madison man found dead in Jackson County

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JACKSON COUNTY, Ala. – Friday, authorities identified a body found at Stephens Gap Cave.

Authorities said Juan Gerardo Cruces, 25, was reported missing Friday afternoon after he didn’t return home from a Thursday trip to the cave.

Jackson County Sheriff Chuck Phillips told WHNT News 19 the Sheriff’s Office, Scottsboro-Jackson County Rescue Squad and Limrock Volunteer Fire Department began searching the cave around 2:30 p.m. Friday and found Cruces’s vehicle in the area.

Phillips said the Huntsville Cave Rescue unit was called in to search the cave itself and found Cruces’s body around 7:45 p.m.

“It appears, his death was caused by a fall,” he stated.

Cruces’s body was removed from the cave after 11 p.m. No autopsy will be performed.