A BODY has been found just hours after a man was spotting walking into the sea.
A fisherman called 999 at 10.50pm last night after spotting the man in the sea near Marsden Grotto, South Shields.
Humber Coastguard co-ordinated a search in which Sunderland Coastguard Rescue Team, and the two RNLI lifeboats from Tynemouth were sent to the scene, along with a police helicopter and the search and rescue helicopter from RAF Boulmer.
About 5.35am, officers searching the beach area discovered the body of a man 600 metres away from the spot where the man was initially seen entering the water.
Formal identification of the man is still to take place.
Inquiries will be carried out to trace next of kin, but officers believe this is the same man.