Indian Harbour Beach police report that they have filed charges against a Satellite Beach man who crashed his 19-foot boat into a dock on the west side of Grand Canal recently. After the initial collision with the dock, the man turned his boat, where it crashed through mango trees and into the backyard of a nearby home. The man’s four-year-old daughter was also aboard the boat when the accidents occurred but was uninjured. The 36-year-old man faces a number of charges in connection with the accidents, including felony boating under the influence, probation violations, child abuse and BUI with property damage. The probation violation stemmed from a DUI conviction in 2011.
The owner of the home where the second accident occurred told police that her son noticed the boat speeding up and down the canal before the accidents occurred. Her son told police that the boat appeared to be out of control as it headed towards his mother’s home and crashed into the trees and the backyard, eventually stopping three feet from the screened-in porch. The homeowner told investigating officers that the boat operator begged her not to call police after his boat came to a stop. The police officer who arrived first on the scene reported that he could smell alcohol on the man’s breath, his eyes were red and glassy and his speech was slurred.
The suspect initially told police that his propeller had gotten tangled in a lobster trap and that when he jumped into the water to untangle it, the boat accelerated suddenly and crashed. He was taken in for questioning, where he failed several field sobriety tests and refused to provide a breath sample.
In 2011, Florida led the country in boating accidents with 742, which caused 79 fatalities. California came in second with 412 accidents that claimed 44 lives. There are over 922,000 registered watercraft in Florida. Each boat operator is responsible for the safe operation of his or her watercraft and is liable for any damages his or her recklessness and negligence causes. If a negligent boater has injured you or a family member and you would like to speak with an experienced Orlando boating accident lawyer, call James O. Cunningham today at 877-FL-INJURY (877-354-6587). Mr. Cunningham has been using his skills as an Orlando personal injury attorney to help injured people since 1977 and has won many millions of dollars in court awards and settlements for his clients. If you have questions about your rights and legal options, call today to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case.
James O. Cunningham
Since 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.
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