“I feel like they lied to us.” Parents of Louis Nix speak out about police investigation into son’s death

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office is investigating how its officers handled the investigation into the death of a former NFL player.

On Feb. 27, 2021, officers found Louis Nix III’s car and body in a north Jacksonville pond.

But Action News Jax is now learning someone called 911 four days earlier.

A report from JSO indicated someone called 911 at 8:07 p.m. on Feb. 23, saying they saw “lights in the water and heard splashing.”

It’s a detail Nix’s mother, Stephanie Wingfield, and Nix’s father are just now learning about.

“I feel like they lied to us,” said Louis Nix Sr.

Wingfield added, “I’m speechless, a loss for words because we just thought there was no witnesses even though we kept going to the scene saying, ‘no can’t be. This is a heavily traveled area.’”

According to the report, officers arrived three minutes after the 911 call but never found anything to warrant more resources.

Our law and safety expert, Dale Carson, said a car could submerge in less than a minute.

”We went four days no sleep, no eating, worrying.”

Four days after that 911 call, a bystander called police after seeing a body in the same pond.

Police later identified it to be Louis Nix III.

A supplemental police report indicated that investigators concluded Nix was driving the wrong way on the road, hit the median and went off the road into the pond.

An autopsy report indicated his blood alcohol content was above the legal driving limit, and there was marijuana in his system.

Ultimately, the medical examiner ruled Nix’s death a drowning.

And while they aren’t sure if Nix could have been saved even if they had spotted him in the water that night, Wingfield said they would have at least got closure sooner.

To the person who called 911, Wingfield said, “Thank you so much even though the outcome wasn’t what we wanted. I appreciate that because a lot of people — they don’t get involved. And they don’t care. So she took the time to care.”

Nix’s mother told us she hopes JSO goes that extra mile the next time a 911 call comes in, and to search a little longer.