East Haven man dies after drowning at clubhouse pool

New Haven

EAST HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — An East Haven man has died after he was found unresponsive at the bottom of a swimming pool at a condo complex Friday.

According to East Haven police, around 5:45 p.m. Friday, they received a call from someone stating there was a man “underwater and not moving” at the Birches Clubhouse in East Haven. The caller told police the man was underwater for two minutes then hung up.

Police and fire officials went to the complex where they found 39-year-old John Vitali unresponsive at the bottom of the pool. Officers pulled him from the water and began chest compressions.

Police say there was no lifeguard on duty, but a pool attendant was there. The attendant told officers that Vitali had arrived at the pool with his young son and the two were playing near the deep end of the pool. As the two were playing, the attendant said she noticed Vitali had been underwater for an extended period of time. She said she was unable to remove Vitali from the pool so she had her son call 911 from the clubhouse phone.

Fire officials performed CPR until an ambulance arrived and took Vitali to Yale-New Haven Hospital. He was pronounced dead Saturday morning.

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