Judge recommends dropping charges in deadly duck boat case

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Posted at 10:17 AM, Sep 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-07 10:17:47-04

A federal judge recommends dismissing the criminal charges filed against three men charged in a fatal duck boat accident two years ago.

17 people were killed when a Ride-the-Ducks boat capsized on Table Rock Lake during a storm near Branson, Mo.

It was one of the deadliest boating accidents in U.S. history. Among the victims were nine members of a single family.

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Authorities indicted the general manager and manager on duty of the boat's operator, Ride-the-Ducks-Branson on various neglect and misconduct charges.

The boat's captain was charged with failing to properly assess incoming weather.

A document released Friday argues the case should be handled at the state level, not by the federal courts.

A district judge will review the magistrate judge's dismissal recommendation.

The tragedy struck home for an Indianapolis woman. Tia Coleman's husband and three children died when the duck boat sank. In total, nine members of Coleman's family perished in the accident. Coleman and her then-13-year-old nephew, Donovan, were the only members of her family who survived.