Coast Guard halts search for cruise ship passenger

AP News
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Posted: May 04, 2011 6:02 PM
Coast Guard halts search for cruise ship passenger

The Coast Guard suspended a search for a cruise ship passenger Wednesday after closed-circuit video showed the woman jumping overboard.

The footage taken aboard the Celebrity Millennium showed the 63-year-old woman climbing over a railing Monday night and letting go, Celebrity Cruises said.

The ship staff learned she was missing when she failed to disembark in San Diego on Tuesday and couldn't be found onboard.

The ship's GPS satellite marked the location where the passenger went overboard, and the coordinates were given to the Coast Guard.

The woman was alone on the video, said Cynthia Martinez, a spokeswoman for Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd., which owns Celebrity. She was traveling with her older brother.

The woman was last seen by her brother in their cabin between 8 p.m. and 9 p.m. Monday as the ship headed from Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, to San Diego, the Coast Guard said. The company said its video showed her jumping overboard at 9:12 p.m.

The Coast Guard withheld the woman's name at her family's request. Petty Officer Allyson Conroy, a Coast Guard spokeswoman, said she was unaware of any signs of foul play.

The voyage began April 18 in San Juan, Puerto Rico, and went through the Panama Canal. San Diego was the final destination.

The Coast Guard searched about 25 hours over more than 1,900 square miles before suspending the operation without finding the body.

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