New details have emerged in the early Friday morning disappearance of Sequent Energy Management President Douglas N. Schantz that have led the New Orleans Police Department (NOPD) to believe he accidentally fell into the Mississippi River and drowned. The body was found Tuesday morning in the river using side scan sonar by members of Texas EquuSearch, a mounted search and recovery team, near where Schantz was last seen on security camera footage.

According to the NOPD, a camera captured Schantz, 54, in a restricted area on a small gangplank near a riverboat at 2:40 a.m. CST, about 40 minutes after he left a Bourbon Street bar (see Daily GPI, March 9). According to The New Orleans Times-Picayune, Police Chief Warren Riley said Schantz had been drinking and “appeared disoriented.”

According to the Associated Press, NOPD’s Bob Young says police believe Schantz drowned accidentally. Young says Schantz had all of his credit cards and jewelry and foul play is not suspected.

He was in town with some coworkers to present a $25,000 donation to the Tulane Energy Institute at Tulane University during a reception Thursday.

Schantz, who was named president of Sequent in May 2003, led all aspects of Sequent’s operations, including natural gas asset management, supply and distribution, trading and producer services. He had 20 years of experience in the energy industry and natural gas markets and came to Sequent from Cinergy Marketing and Trading.

Peter Tumminello, an executive vice president at Sequent, has stepped in as acting president of the Houston-based business.

Sequent began operations in 2001 in Houston, quickly building a natural gas business providing customers with asset management and optimization, storage, transportation, producer and peaking services, and wholesale marketing. Currently Sequent buys and sells natural gas, with daily physical volumes of more than 2.7 Bcf, across more than 70 pipelines with more than 330 counterparties located across North America.

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