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New Jersey man cleared of all charges in 2008 fatal boat accident

A Brick resident was acquitted of all charges on April 23 pertaining to a 2008 accident on the Metedeconk River. The boat crash seriously injured four people on a separate vehicle and resulted in the death of the pilot, a 49-year old man from Essex Falls.

The fatal crash occurred when the accused man's 27-foot Imperial speedboat ran into the opposing 17-foot boat. The man fled the scene and through his attorney communicated with authorities 10 hours later. He claimed that he believed he had struck a buoy or a log instead of a vehicle. The man was cleared of his wrongful death charges of assault by vessel and vehicular homicide after a three week trial.

The prosecution argued that the fatal accident occurred because the defendant neglected to turn on the front light of his boat. Witnesses testified against the prosecution, and evidence reportedly exhibited that he was observing the right of way at the time of the crash. The Superior Court jury subsequently acquitted the charges after less than an hour of deliberation. The family of the victim was not rewarded any compensation for their pain and suffering.

In cases like these, the outcome may have been different if the family had contacted a more aggressive attorney immediately after the tragic incident. Families of wrongful death victims may take legal action to recover monetary damages, such as medical and funeral expenses. With the proper legal team, you may be able to deal with your grief and healing process separately while your attorney and legal team handles the court process.

Source: Philly.com, "Man is acquitted in fatal boat accident," April 25, 2013

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