A Florida man who was on the hook for hundreds of thousands of dollars in child support went missing while paddleboarding, NBC’s Miami affiliate reported. Constantine George Theoharis, 52, went missing off the coast near Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on March 20, right as he was due in court for missed child support payments.
Theoharis reportedly owed $549,000 worth of child support for two children, according to court documents. His March 20 court hearing was rescheduled for Tuesday, but he did not make that date, either.
Man who disappeared while paddleboarding in ocean off Fort Lauderdale was due in court https://t.co/93bkLdFOVH
— NBC 6 South Florida (@nbc6) March 28, 2018
After his divorce a decade ago, Theoharis reportedly spent years skipping out on payments. His ex-wife claimed she spent five years trying to get the money from him. However, it was believed he did not have the money and any court appearance likely would have resulted in a jail sentence.
His brother Rick Theoharis told NBC-6 that he believed he could have deliberately gone missing to avoid payments or drowned.
“Right now, I’m like 50-50, either he fled or he’s out there drowned, I don’t know,” Rick Theoharis told NBC-6. “For nobody to find the board, for him not to come back, his wallet, keys were there at the house, something’s fishy.”
If he escaped somewhere, he did so without some bare essentials, as he left his passport and wallet at home. A witness reportedly saw him depart at 7:30 that morning, Miami’s CBS affiliate reported. He was captured on someone’s surveillance equipment approaching the water with a blue paddleboard.
Relatives said Theoharis was a certified diver who could be trusted in water, but he did not take an oxygen tank with him. In 2016, the United States Coast Guard reported a rising amount of deaths in paddle sports, which includes things like paddleboarding, kayaking and canoeing.