Family Sues Over Boating Death of Iowa Girl

May 29, 2012

The family of a Fairfield, Iowa, girl who died in a 2010 boating accident on Coralville Lake over Memorial Day weekend has filed a wrongful-death lawsuit against four people involved in the incident.

Sarah Nicole Perkins, 12, was thrown from an inner tube being towed by a boat and hit by another boat, according to the lawsuit filed Tuesday in Johnson County District Court. The girl suffered fatal injuries.

The girl’s parents, Bill and Erika Perkins, claim that the owners and operators of the boats were negligent. The filing seeks unspecified monetary compensation.

The boat towing Sarah was owned by Robert Gray and operated by his wife, Janyce. The other boat was driven by James Zahorik. All three plus Zahorik’s wife, Jennifer, are named in the lawsuit.

None of the four defendants could be immediately reached Saturday for comment. Court records don’t list their attorneys.

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources and the Johnson County Attorney’s Office investigated the incident, but no charges were filed.

Authorities said several factors contributed to the girl’s death. The Natural Resource department said Zahorik’s boat was speeding up as it exited a no-wake zone and Gray’s boat was nearing the zone. Both boats turned left, sending Perkins into the turbulent water, where she was hit.

Was this article valuable?

Here are more articles you may enjoy.