JoJo John indicted in fatal Hudson River boat crash

Marcus Solis has the story
November 7, 2013 2:26:19 PM PST
The man accused of killing two people when he drove a boat into a barge on the Hudson River was charged in an 18-count indictment Thursday.

JoJo John, 35, is facing two counts of first-degree vehicular manslaughter, four counts of second-degree vehicular manslaughter, two counts of second-degree manslaughter, two counts of criminally negligent homicide, two counts of first-degree vehicular assault, two counts of second-degree vehicular assault and two counts of operating a vessel under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

John was piloting a 19-foot Stingray powerboat just after 10:30 p.m. on July 26 when it struck a barge near the Tappan Zee Bridge, killing a bride-to-be and her fiance's best man.

"The defendant is accused of taking the helm of his boat while under the influence of alcohol, being unable to maintain situational awareness and striking a construction barge," Rockland County District Attorney Thomas P. Zugibe said. "Drinking and driving is a lethal mix, as it appears to have been in this incident, which left several families shattered. My office will aggressively prosecute this case to ensure that justice is done."

The indictment charges that John crashed the vessel into a construction barge, with the impact throwing Lindsey Stewart, of Piermont, and Mark Lennon, of Pearl River, into the river, resulting in their deaths.

John and three others suffered serious injuries in the accident.

A court order was obtained, and John's blood alcohol level was found to be.15, nearly twice the legal limit of .08. Additionally, cocaine metabolites were found in his system.

He was arrested while recovering at Nyack Hospital.

John faces a maximum sentence of 15 years in state prison on the top counts of the indictment.

His attorney says the barge was not lit well enough.