Police ID Dorothea Beach victim as tourist from Utah
Published: April 2, 2014
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Police have identified the man who was found dead of an apparent drowning Saturday near Dorothea Beach.
The victim was James Handley, 47, of South Ogden, Utah, who was visiting the territory with his fiancé.
Witnesses said Handley was overcome by rough seas and high waves, according to police.
Police were notified of the incident about 12:45 p.m. Saturday and spoke to the victim's fiancé, who said she and Handley were in the water with an oar, according to a statement released by police.
The oar floated away from Handley, and he soon was struggling in the water, police said. Several people attempted to help, but the water was rough and the waves were high, according to police.
About an hour later, the victim's body was found floating near Neltjeberg beach and was recovered by police officers and St. Thomas Rescue personnel.
The victim later was pronounced dead by medical staff.
St. Thomas Rescue Chief Joseph Cranston Jr. said the seas on the northside of the island were particularly rough and dangerous for swimming last weekend.
In a separate incident during the weekend, a second man died while swimming between Coki Point and Thatch Cay. He has not yet been identified, pending notification of next of kin.