I know it is just a coincidence but it seems like a bad couple of years for sheriff deputies and their speed boats...
I know it is just a coincidence but to me it is another example of how the people we elect to write and enforce our laws don't always feel they need to abide by the laws they legislate and enforce.
BOAT CRASH LAWSUIT // The chaotic ride of Deputy Brock
"About a dozen people - a bartender, a nurse, a waitress and a model for the Home Shopping
Network - drank beer
and talked as they rode
in a 28-foot boat from one bar to another off St. Pete Beach.
At the helm
was Pinellas sheriff's Cpl. Paul Brock.
He told investigators he had six to 10 drinks during the day, including two bottles of Michelob Ultra at his last stop. Then, he steered north in the Intracoastal Waterway after midnight.
What happened next, he told investigators, was an unfortunate accident
Brock said he was traveling 5 to 7 mph in his yellow Baja
sport fisherman when he approached a curve in Boca Ciega Bay. Then, the weight of his 12 passengers shifted. The throttle suddenly moved forward and tilted the boat, causing him to fall down, Brock said.
The boat shot forward in the dark, speeding up to 25 mph. Before Brock could regain control, the boat slammed through five wooden docks in a violent collision
that ripped off the center console and tossed two people overboard
. The crash was so loud as many as 32 people called 911.
Brock, 42, pleaded no contest to boating
under the influence in March."
"The passengers on board, at least 12, were not the most cooperative group.
Some tossed beer
bottles into the water before officers arrived, according to witnesses. Others tried to leave the scene, causing investigators to call a local taxi company and request they not give anyone a ride."
More drinks, then everybody was ready to go home.
After midnight, Malogrides climbed into the boat. It was a 2003 model with twin outboard
engines and a total of 400 horsepower. Malogrides stood on one side of Brock, her boyfriend on the other.
For the first few minutes, Brock looked over his shoulder at another boat following close behind, Malogrides said. The men
in the boat had just left the same bar, she said.
She thought Brock was contemplating racing
them. She glanced over at her boyfriend, who looked concerned. She heard him tell Brock: "Don't do it."
Brock said, "Hold on!" according to Malogrides. Then he floored it.
Malogrides wrapped her arms around a pole as the boat sped through the water. Suddenly, as Brock tried to round the curve from Boca Ciega Bay into Blind Pass, the boat veered toward a row of docks near the St. Pete Yacht and Tennis Condominiums, she said.
People in the boat began to scream as it slammed through one dock
, then four more. Malogrides heard the sound of wood cracking. Ahead, she saw a boat parked on a lift
at the sixth dock
. She feared they would crash into it."
and Wildlife Officer David Albonetti arrived around 2:15 a.m. He immediately recognized Brock, as the two men
had known each other for about three years.
Brock's eyes were bloodshot, his feet unsteady. The investigator asked him to perform field sobriety tests. Brock refused.
From looking at the docks, Albonetti estimated that Brock was going about 45 mph through the minimum wake zone. He knew Brock was familiar with the area; he had seen Brock traveling there several times.
Albonetti felt certain that Brock caused the crash by speeding, driving recklessly and drinking. He placed Brock under arrest for boating under the influence.
He didn't have a portable breath alcohol analyzer, so he took Brock to the St. Pete Beach Police Department for a test. Brock declined and was issued a $500 fine. He was taken to the Pinellas County jail for booking.
There, his supervisors demanded he take a breath test. Under Sheriff's Office rules, officers under investigation for drug or alcohol use must submit to a test.
And so at 6:15 a.m., 5 1/2 hours after the crash, Brock blew a 0.076 two times. Authorities rounded it to .08, the level at which Florida