HANOVER COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — After a fisherman cast his line in a pond off Harbor Hill Road and waited to feel the tug of a fish nibbling at the bait, he reeled in something unexpected.

Rachel Jones told 8News she was accompanying her son as he fished when they saw something sticking out of the water.

“We watch like true crime, and I’m like, ‘Oh my gosh, this could be a car,’” Jones said. “I just didn’t think that it was real.”

Jones called the Hanover County Sheriff’s Office and deputies responded to the pond, located behind Mill Trace Village Apartments in the Mechanicsville area. The sheriff’s office said its Underwater Forensic Dive Team found a submerged Nissan Altima that had been reported as stolen.

No one was found inside the vehicle, and officers rigged “lift bags” to free the car from the mud below.

The car appeared to have been soaking “for quite some time,” according to the Sheriff’s Office, although investigators are still working to determine when and how the car ended up in the pond.

“It could just be a stolen vehicle and somebody needed to get rid of it,” said Sgt. Steve Wills with the Hanover County Sheriff’s Office. “So they found a way to roll it down this hill into the pond. Or it could have been insurance related.”

“I just never would have never thought there would be a car in this pond. Like it’s just so small. And there’s just really no crime or anything,” Jones said. “I just figured that it wouldn’t be here.”

The Hanover County Fire and EMS Department assisted the Hanover County Sheriff’s Office with gear and lighting throughout the overnight investigation.