Shocking video from a volunteer dive team that found the remains of missing California teen Kiely Rodni reveals the 16-year-old’s body was in the back seat of her car that was submerged in a reservoir.
The Oregon-based search team, Adventures with Purpose, used sonar to spot Rodni’s Honda CR-V in Prosser Lake on Aug. 21 — more than two weeks after the teen was reported missing following an outdoor graduation party near the Prosser Family Campground in Truckee, Calif.
The dramatic video shows diver Nick Rinn spotting the Honda upside down about 14 feet beneath the surface and confirming it was Rodni’s vehicle via the matching license plate.
As the diver made his way slowly around the overturned vehicle, he noticed the rear driver-side window was down.
“I see a pair of shoes in the back … I have just confirmed there are human remains in the vehicle,” Rinn said over his radio headset to fellow team member, Doug Bishop, who manned the sonar above the water. “The passenger window is broken out, it appears. Rear driver side window is half way down.”
After confirming remains were inside the Honda, Rinn made his way back to the surface.
“She’s in the back of the vehicle. She’s not in the driver’s seat. It looks suspicious to me,” he said. “Vehicle is upside down. One window is halfway down. One window is all the way down. Call the authorities.”
The 47-minute video posted by Adventures with Purpose also showed authorities pulling the vehicle out of the creek as Rodni family members watched.
“How in the f–k could they have missed it,” said Rodni’s father, referring to local law enforcement who had also combed the reservoir prior to the volunteer search and recovery group. “That’s f–king impossible. Thank you, Doug.”
An autopsy confirmed the body was that of the 16-year-old honors student, who had just graduated.
The Rodni family released a statement thanking the community, media and law enforcement for helping in the search for Kiely.
“We have weathered a storm of unfathomable force, and it is purely thanks to the army of warriors, matriarchs, healers and helpers holding us up that we continue to stand today,” they said.
Adventures with Purpose is an underwater sonar search and recovery dive team dedicated to helping families with missing loved ones, according to the group’s video. The group used two sonar boats and other equipment to spot Rodni’s vehicle.
In an interview with Law & Crime, Bishop said the group started as an environmental clean-up organization that focused on removing vehicles underwater. For the past two and a half years, the volunteer group has been primarily focused on missing persons and vehicle cases.
“Those vehicles quickly turned into human remains turning up inside of them,” Bishop said. “While filming this, we amassed a wonderful support group all around the world who watched and supported what we do.”
The group claims to have found and helped solve 24 missing cold cases since 2019.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Adventures with Purpose will focus their next efforts to search for two California women— 22-year-old Jolissa Fuentes of Selma, who disappeared earlier this month, and 75-year-old Annette Adams of San Luis Obispo, who has been missing since April 2021.