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NEW CASTLE Search continues for man who jumped into river



Published: Sun, March 23, 2003 @ 12:00 a.m.



NEW CASTLE, Pa. -- Two city firefighters manned a net stretched across the Shenango River at Cherry Street this morning as the search for Jason Sims entered its third day.

Two-man teams have been manning the net since Tuesday afternoon in the event Sims drowned.

New Castle Fire Chief Jim Donston said this morning that there is still no sign of Sims. Police continue to investigate. Sims, 25, of 714 Blaine St., jumped into the river about 1:45 p.m. Tuesday as he was being chased by police; he was wanted on a parole violation charge.

Donston said he stationed firefighters at several bridges along the river to watch for Sims, who was pulled under by the fast-moving current about 200 yards north of the Grant Street bridge. He hasn't been seen since. About 30 firefighters from New Castle, South New Castle Borough and Taylor and Princeton townships responded. Most walked the river banks from Grant Street to Cherry Street looking for Sims until about 6 p.m. Tuesday.

Police said Sims had been spotted on a porch at his mother's apartment Tuesday afternoon and ran when he saw officers pulling up in a car. He jumped a chain-link fence and went into the river.

Sims got to the middle of the river, then struggled to stay above water, New Castle Police Chief Vic Cubellis said. The chief would not say if he thought Sims had died in the water, which Cubellis estimated was between 30 and 40 degrees.




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