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Emotional witness tells B.C. court about boat crash that injured him, killed pal

Image Credit: Contributed/Trevor Rockliffe
March 11, 2015 - 10:34 AM

KAMLOOPS - A man who suffered two collapsed lungs and several broken bones when he was struck by a boat during a fatal collision on Shuswap Lake became emotional in court as he described the crash.

Todd Stone (not the MLA) testified that he was standing next to houseboat operator Ken Brown on July 3, 2010 when the collision occurred.

Leon Reinbrecht has been charged with one count each of criminal negligence causing death and criminal negligence causing bodily harm. The Crown alleges he was driving his speedboat erratically prior to the head-on collision with the houseboat.

The boat was headed back to Anglemont after taking in a post-Canada Day fireworks show on Magna Bay.

"Everybody just calmly puttered out," Todd told B.C. Supreme Court.

"There was an awful lot of traffic."

Stone said the houseboat was travelling at a "trolling speed," with Brown manning the controls.

"I had my right shoulder against one doorjamb, he had his left shoulder on the other," Stone said. "He's steering as we looked out the front of the boat.

"I must have turned to look at someone and I heard Ken say, 'What's this guy doing?' When I turned to look, all I could see was the boat coming over the bow."

Stone was struck by the boat and injured.

"After that, I remember the speedboat motor or propeller screaming," he said, becoming upset in the courtroom. "After that shut off, I knew I had to get up and do something or I was going to die."

Stone testified he has no memory of what happened next.

Previous witnesses have testified they saw a boat driving erratically and at high speed prior to the crash.

The Crown is expected to call 50 witnesses in Reinbrecht's trial, which is expected to run into late April.

— This is a corrected version of the story. The original referred to the trial as Brown's. It should have read Reinbrecht's.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2015
The Canadian Press

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