Retired Virginia Beach Police officer drowns at Oceanfront after trying to save sea turtle

Posted at 1:40 PM, Jun 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-19 12:58:40-04

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Officials responded to a possible drowning on Thursday afternoon.

VBPD Marine Patrol, VPFD and EMS responded to the report offshore at the Oceanfront.

Police tweeted about the incident around 1:30 p.m.

According to police, a fishing charter boat was underway when the boat operator, identified as ​53-year-old William Parker Jenkins Jr., jumped in the water to try and free a sea turtle that appeared entangled by a rope. While in the water, he began to struggle.

Others on the boat called 911 and entered the water to help Jenkins.

VBPD Marine Patrol Units responded and were able to pull Jenkins onto their vessel and initiate CPR. VBFD and EMS also responded and provided further assistance.

Jenkins was transported to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

The VBPD said Jenkins was a retired police officer who served with the department between 2002 and 2011.

There is no further information at this time.