Dominican Republic searching beaches for missing Florida surfer

AP

Authorities in the Dominican Republic said Thursday that they are looking for a South Florida tourist who apparently vanished from a beach popular with surfers.

Police said 46-year-old tennis coach Darryl Fornatora of West Palm Beach was last seen Jan. 27 at El Encuentro beach in the popular tourist area of Cabarete in the country’s north coast. They said he arrived with a friend on Jan. 25 to surf and planned to return home on Jan. 31.

Police Sgt. Rosario, who declined to give his first name because he was not authorized to talk to the media, told The Associated Press that Fornatora was seen getting out of the water, but that it’s still possible he might have had some water-related accident.

Rosario said authorities have flown across the area as well as used search dogs on land. He said interviews with employees of nearby bars and restaurants have not yielded anything.

A helicopter was being sent along more than 80 km (50 miles) of coastline around Puerto Plata while divers were searching the ocean, Leon Alter, an official with the Dominican Air Force, told the AP.