Crews resuming search for missing boater

Active search for missing boater underway (Kim Kalunian, WPRI-12)

FALL RIVER, Mass. (WPRI) – Multiple state agencies continue to search for a missing boater in Fall River.

Officials responded to Dave’s beach and South Watuppa Pond around 4:45 p.m. Saturday for the report of a person in the water.

The Bristol County District Attorney’s office says 35-year-old Emerson Belirio of Fall River jumped off the 20-foot boat to go swimming and never returned. The victim, along with his wife, kids, and another married couple who own the boat were together at the time of the incident.

Initial reports indicate Belirio was wearing a life jacket at the time of his disappearance.

Officials suspended their search at 7 p.m. Sunday night, and plan to resume operations at the pond early Monday morning.

Massachusetts State Police along with Environmental Police, Fall River Police, Fall River Fire, Fall River Emergency Management, and Westport Fire are searching by air and by sea for the victim.

Eyewitness News observed a helicopter flying about the search area, as well as boats and jet skis aiding in this search.

The Fall River Fire Department has not determined whether this is a search and rescue or search and recover mission.

According to the District Attorney’s office, foul play is not suspected and alcohol does not appear to be a factor in the incident.

A GoFundMe account has been set up to help Belirio’s fiancee and their children with funeral expenses and financial support. You can find the page to donate here.

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