Judge tosses manslaughter charge in boat fire that killed 34
By BRIAN MELLEY
LOS ANGELES (AP) — A federal judge has thrown out an indictment charging a boat captain with manslaughter in the deaths of 34 scuba divers three years ago off the California coast. Judge George Wu ruled Friday that the indictment charging the captain with seaman’s manslaughter failed to allege that Jerry Boylan acted with gross negligence. Federal prosecutors argued that the law only requires proving simple negligence. Prosecutors say Boylan failed to post a watch on the dive boat Conception in September 2019 when a nighttime fire led to one of the deadliest maritime disasters in recent U.S. history. A spokesperson for the U.S. attorney in Los Angeles says prosecutors will seek approval from the Department of Justice to appeal the ruling.