Teen charged with vessel homicide

Author:
Publish date:

JUNE 7 A Florida teenager charged in connection with the death of a young snorkeler will be held without release for more than 20 days until his formal court arraignment later this month.

The teenager, who is 13, is accused of driving an 18-foot skiff over a 6-year-old snorkeler on Memorial Day off Key West, Fla., then fleeing the scene, news reports say. Prosecutors reportedly asked that the teenager be held at a juvenile detention center because of the risk that he won’t show up.

The teenager is charged with vessel homicide, reports say, a first-degree felony punishable for adults by serving 30 years in prison and paying up to $10,000 in fines. Because he is younger than 14 the teenager will have to be indicted by a grand jury to be tried as an adult. As a juvenile he could instead receive probation, deferred prosecution or commitment to a residential juvenile program.

The 6-year-old boy had been snorkeling with his father and a sibling when the incident happened, according to reports. The boy’s funeral took place last Friday.

— Jason Fell