A new video shows a woman battling cruise ship safety moments before she allegedly jumped off a balcony and disappeared into the Gulf of Mexico on Wednesday afternoon.
The footage shows three guards at Carnival Valor holding a clearly distraught woman behind her back. She was not handcuffed, despite previous statements from passengers.
She is heard calling out the name “Alicia” as the guards help her up the stairs and down the pool deck after the alleged hot tub incident.
Shortly after being escorted from the deck, the 32-year-old woman allegedly escaped from the hands of the guards and jumped from the tenth floor of the ship into the ocean.
Her jump was not shown on video, but passengers told Fox 8 that she hit the side of the boat before hitting the water first.
Shocked passengers rush to the edge of the ship, while the crew throws in life jackets and flares to mark its position in the water. Passengers claim that the woman soon disappeared.
The woman was traveling in Carnival Valor with her husband on a five-day cruise to Mexico that departed from New Orleans on Saturday. The Coast Guard has since suspended the search for the woman.
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The footage shows three guards at Carnival Valor holding a clearly distraught woman behind her back.
She can be heard calling out the name “Alicia” as the guards help her up the stairs and down the pool deck.
“Security pulled her out of the jacuzzi. Whenever they had to take her into custody, she was obviously upset and crazy,” witness Kim Barnett told WAFB.
“The guards tried to calm her down, but she behaved belligerently towards them,” passenger Emil Avenarius repeated in an interview with Nola.com.
“They had to restrain her because she was belligerent. She broke free and rolled over the side.
Avenarius, a retired law enforcement officer, claims another eyewitness told him she “saw blood and twitching movements” after the woman fell overboard.
“She said it was like a seizure, and I said that it could be due to a head injury.”
Shocked passengers rush to the edge of the ship
The crew threw life jackets and flares into the Gulf of Mexico to mark her position in the water.
The Coast Guard, with the help of its crew, searched about 2,514 square miles for 14 hours before pausing the search at 5:37 p.m. Thursday. Officials said the decision to suspend the search was not taken lightly and they “express our deepest condolences to the family at this difficult time” (pictured: a flare thrown to mark the woman’s whereabouts)
U.S. Coast Guard officials say the incident occurred on the day of sailing as the ship sailed back to New Orleans after visiting ports of call in Costa Maya and Cozumel.
The woman fell overboard around 2:28 p.m. Wednesday, about 150 miles off the coast of Southwest Pass, Louisiana.
Crew members attempted to mark her location, and the ship circled around for several hours before the Coast Guard took over the search and rescue operation.
Carnival Valor appears to have resumed its route and returned to dock in New Orleans around 10:30 am Thursday.
The Coast Guard, with the help of its crew, searched about 2,514 square miles for 14 hours before suspending the search at 5:37 p.m. Thursday.
“The decision to suspend a search and rescue business is never made lightly,” Chief Warrant Officer Trisha Eldridge, a duty officer in the New Orleans sector, told Fox 8.
“We offer our deepest condolences to the family at this difficult time.”
The Carnival Valor, carrying 2,980 guests and 1,180 crew, appears to be on its next four-day cruise to Mexico. The ship left New Orleans around 5:30 p.m. Thursday and is scheduled to return to port on Monday morning.
Carnival claims that their care team provides support to the woman’s husband as well as their family.
It is unclear if other family members were on board the ship with the couple.
Meanwhile, Valor, carrying 2,980 guests and 1,180 crew members, appears to have set off on her next voyage, a four-day cruise to Mexico.
According to CruiseMapper.com, the ship left New Orleans around 5:30 p.m. Thursday and should return to port on Monday morning.