Coast Guard suspends search for missing boater

Published On: Jul 14 2012 07:00:39 PM CDT
Updated On: Jul 16 2012 08:26:00 AM CDT

July 15, 2012: The Coast Guard suspends its search for a missing boater. Gary Striewski reports.

BAYTOWN, Texas -

The Coast Guard suspended its search for a boater who disappeared after two boats collided in Baytown Saturday.

Police said on Cedar Bayou just south of Roseland Park Saturday afternoon, a 17-foot center console boat and a jon boat collided, turning over the jon boat and sending both passengers overboard. The accident happened about 3:30 p.m. Saturday.

One passenger, a 34-year-old man, has been missing since.

The Coast Guard launched crews aboard a MH-65 Dolphin helicopter and a 25-foot response boat to search with police, fire and dive teams.

Officials with the Coast Guard said Sunday they suspended their search because they no longer believe the victim is alive. Meanwhile, other agencies continued combing the area.

"If my babies were missing, I'd want someone to look for them. I just felt compelled that we should go out and try to help our neighbors," said Paul McElroy, a rescue volunteer.

The second victim, a 19-year-old man, was out Sunday helping with the search.

Investigators said they're looking for two men who caused the accident.

Lieutenant Eric Freed with the Baytown Police Department said homicide charges may be looming after the two men left the scene after hitting the boat head on.

Witnesses said the two men hastily made their way back to a boat ramp, loaded it onto the back end of a late model Ford 250 pickup truck, and took off.

Late Sunday, two men from Baytown were in custody after turning themselves in. Their names were not immediately released.

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