St. Croix drowning victim was half-brother to St. Paul murder suspect

Authorities have identified the man who drowned Tuesday night in the St. Croix River in Hudson, Wisconsin, as the half-brother of the St. Paul man who shot and killed his girlfriend’s family before taking his own life.

Police said a group of teenagers were swimming in the St. Croix River Tuesday night when two of them struggled in the water, and 19-year-old Jeffery Arkis Taylor never made it back up.

According to police, the teens were trying to swim from the beach at the end of Dike Road to the island about 150 yards away. One of the men struggled, and another man swam to help. But, the dangers of the current were too strong.

“There was one male that was pulled from the water. Bystanders had revived that person because when he was pulled from the water he was unresponsive and not breathing,” said Hudson Police Chief Marty Jensen.

About an hour later, divers from St. Croix EMS recovered Taylor’s body.

Back in April, Taylor was caught up in a tragic St. Paul murder-suicide when his half-brother Jeffery Jamaile Taylor killed the mother of his daughter along with her sister and her father. Jeffery Jamaile Taylor then took his own life.
Police later found Jeffery Arkis Taylor hiding in a shed with his half-brother's young daughter. He was arrested, but never charged and was released from the Ramsey County jail.

Jensen said the beach is not recognized by the city.

“There are no life guards on duty there […] that's something that people need to take in consideration, too, when swimming out there," he said.

With the warm weather expected this weekend, authorities remind visitors not to swim in the river unless you’re with a partner.