Two victims who died after a plane crashed into the water off the coast of Ocean City, Md., have been identified as police officers.
Authorities recovered the bodies of Thomas J. Geoghegan Jr., 43, and Joshua D. Adickes, 27, from the wreckage Monday afternoon. Both were officers with the Ocean City Police Department.
Maryland State Police say the wreckage of the Nanchang CJ-6A was in about 30 feet of water, a quarter mile off the beach from 130th Street.
Geoghegan, of Ocean City, was the owner of the plane. Authorities believe he was piloting, and Adickes, of Berlin, Md., was his passenger.
Divers had to work in zero visibility and rough waters, authorities said Monday afternoon. They had been forced to temporarily suspend the search around 1:15 p.m. due to dangerous conditions caused by an approaching storm front.
Mayor Rick Meehan says witnesses told police that the aircraft spun out of control Sunday before crashing.
The plane crashed in full view of some alarmed beachgoers. "As the airplane was going up, he was going up high," Stephen Drake, from Bel Air, Md., told News4 Washington. "Then he shut the engine off and came down and he was doing barrel rolls and just a death spiral...
"And he looked like he wanted to come up out of it, and the engine started to start and then it died again, and he went into another spiral down, and he was too low to pull up, and he just went in," Drake said.
One of the first calls about the crashing plane came from a witness aboard a recreational craft in the water, according to the Coast Guard.
Authorities believe the plane took off from the Ocean City Airport between 3:30 p.m. and 3:45 p.m. yesterday. They are still unsure where the men had planned to travel.
The bodies of both men will be transported to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Baltimore for autopsies.
The Coast Guard, Maryland state police and the Ocean City Fire Department were part of the search, which also involved the state police helicopter.