Southeast Idaho Man Not Guilty in Boating Death

January 14, 2013

An eastern Idaho jury has found not guilty a man charged with negligence and gross negligence while operating a boat after the 14-year-old girl he was pulling on a tube behind his boat died when the tube collided with another boat.

The Post Register reports the Bonneville County jury deliberated about two hours Friday night before finding Blaine Petersen of Ammon not guilty.

Petersen wept earlier as he told the jury he would gladly trade places with Whitnie Harris of Idaho Falls, who died in the boating accident on July 5, 2011.

Jefferson County Deputy Prosecutor Paul Ziel told jurors Petersen was a good man but he was driving a boat at high speeds and turning a corner with poor visibility, putting life in danger.

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