Sunshine Skyway jumper may be from Manatee

MANATEE - A witness saw a person jump from the center span of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge at 8:49 a.m. today, according to Debbie Carter, a Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman.

Despite the efforts of various marine units of the sheriff's office and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, a body has yet been found, Carter added.

The jumper may have been from the Manatee and Sarasota area, based on the small motorcycle or motor scooter the jumper left at the scene, Carter added.

The sheriff's office ran a check on the license plate on the motor-scooter left on the northbound side of the center span of the bridge and the plate comes back to an owner in the Manatee and Sarasota county area, Carter said.

"We have talked to members of the family of the individual who owns the scooter, but until we have recovered a body we can't release who that is, since the scooter may have been loaned to someone else," Carter said.

Florida Highway Patrol cameras mounted on the bridge also captured images of a person jumping, Carter said.

"It's not unusual not to have found a body right away," Carter said. ""It may be several days before we recover it."