Suspect wasn't drunk in houseboat crash that killed girl and dad, says lawyer

Jason Bernal, the suspect charged with criminally negligent homicide in a deadly houseboat accident that killed a father and daughter at Temple Lake Park in June, was not legally drunk at the time, his lawyer said Wednesday.

The determination was made during a recent Administrative License Revocation hearing that ruled Bernal -- who was operating the vessel -- may keep his driver's license for now, Attorney C. Barrett Thomas explained.

To be clear, the Temple Police Department has never publicly linked Bernal to alcohol in connection with this particular accident nor has any connection been reported by this station. Generally speaking, boaters are allowed to have alcohol in their systems, as long as they remain below the legal BAC limit of 0.08 percent -- just like regular drivers.

According to the original information provided by law enforcement, Kaitlyn Oliver, 4, was killed when the houseboat backed over her on Lake Belton. Her father, Patrick, lost both legs trying to save her and died later.

© 2017 KCEN-TV


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