Man Jumps Off Tour Boat and Drowns

Witness says jumper was trying to swim

A witness says the man who drowned after jumping off a boat near the Cape May Lighthouse Thursday looked like he was trying to swim.

“He was splashing on top of the water,” Tim Albert of Lower Township told the Press of Atlantic City. Albert was on the beach with his brother. “I said to my brother (John), ‘Look at that guy. What the hell is he doing?’ Then I heard the sirens go off.”

Ajit Modi, 51, from Plainsboro, Middlesex County, jumped off the side of the Spirit of Cape May without a lifejacket shortly after the dolphin and whale watching boat went out into the Delaware Bay. It happened to be a day students were on board for an end-of-the-year field trip. Most of the students were from Middle Township.

Albert said the jumper looked like he was trying to get to a yellow buoy that marks an artificial concrete reef, according to the report. The Lighthouse is on Cape May Point, where the ocean and the bay meet, producing strong currents.

“All of a sudden, he’s gone. I said to my brother, ‘Where the hell did he go?’” said Albert.

A Coast Guard helicopter crew spotted Ajit Modi's body near the Cape May-Lewes Ferry Terminal after a four hour search.

New Jersey State Police and the Coast Guard are investigating.

Contact Us