Tracy Gordon Charged with Felony BUI After Fatal Crash near Lighthouse Marina
A Chapin family was struck by tragedy on Saturday, September 21 after their boat was struck by a suspected drunk boater on Lake Murray. The collision happened at around 9 p.m. near the Lighthouse Marina, off Johnson Marina Road in Columbia.
Police believe that 53-year-old Tracy Gordon was boating under the influence when his cigarette boat crashed into a pontoon boat carrying a family of three – a husband and wife and their daughter.
The husband, 68-year-old Stanley Virgil Kiser, died at the scene of the crash. His wife lost a leg and their daughter was also injured in the crash. Emergency responders rushed the wife and daughter to a hospital for treatment of severe injuries. The condition of the daughter has not been released.
Gordon was charged with three counts of felony BUI following the crash.
Several agencies responded to the scene, including the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (SCDNR), Richland County Sheriff’s Department, Columbia Fire Department, and Irmo Fire Department.
This incident is being investigated by the Richland County Coroner’s Office, the Richland County Sheriff’s Department, and the SCDNR.
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If you or a loved one were injured or killed in this incident or a similar incident, I would be happy to speak with you and discuss your options.
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Legal Options for Drunk Driving and Boating Crash Victims in South Carolina
Attorney contributor Brian Kent of CrimeVictim.Attorney represents people who have been injured by intoxicated individuals, helping them fight for the financial compensation they deserve. Here are a few thoughts from Brian on the legal rights of those who have suffered injuries in drunk driving and drunk boating crashes in South Carolina:
There is no excuse for getting behind the wheel of any vehicle while intoxicated – whether it’s a motor vehicle on the road or a water vessel on the waterways. But sadly, thousands of families are still affected by drunk driving and drunk boating crashes every year. These families deserve justice after suffering serious injuries or losing loved ones because of another reckless individual’s decision to drive drunk.
In South Carolina and many other states, these families may have legal recourse in two different types of lawsuits – a personal injury (or wrongful death in fatal accidents) claim and a dram shop claim. Personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits can be filed against the intoxicated person who caused the crash, while a dram shop claim is filed against an alcohol vendor who provided alcohol to that intoxicated person before the crash.
According to South Carolina dram shop laws, alcohol vendors can be held liable for injuries and deaths caused by intoxicated customers if the customer was either under 21 years of age or visibly intoxicated at the time the alcohol was provided to them.
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed after being hit by a drunk driver or drunk boater, you can learn more about your legal options in a free consultation with an experienced drunk driving injury victims lawyer.
The Lighthouse Marina in Chapin, South Carolina
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