December 29, 2020
FWC and Hillsborough State Attorney announce charges filed in deadly Boating Under the Influence case
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) and the Hillsborough State Attorney's Office today announced that charges have been filed against Andrew Joseph Miltner, age 40, for BUI manslaughter and vessel homicide stemming from the fatal boating collision in May that resulted in the death of 12-year-old Jasina Campbell.
“This is every parents' worst nightmare. It's our job to protect the community, and we intend to make sure this person can't do this again,” said Hillsborough State Attorney Andrew Warren. “Everyone who's planning to spend time on the water around the holidays needs to hear this: Boating while intoxicated and recklessly putting lives in danger won't be tolerated in our community.”
On May 17, 2020, an incident occurred on the Alafia River involving a personal watercraft operated by Miltner and a boat towing a tube. Campbell and another young person were riding on the tube when Miltner's PWC collided with the tube, fatally striking Campbell. The FWC, Hillsborough County Fire Rescue and the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office responded to the scene. The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office deployed their dive team. The other rider in the tube was transported to the hospital with injuries — but, sadly, Campbell was recovered by the dive team, deceased.
After a thorough, months-long investigation, it was determined that Miltner's consumption of alcohol
, reckless operation of the PWC — including an accelerated speed in a posted idle speed zone and failure to avoid collision with the inner tube — caused the death of Campbell.
“Tragedies like this are avoidable by simply not operating a watercraft while impaired. Jasina Campbell should be celebrating the holidays with her family and, sadly, she is not because of a poor decision Mr. Miltner made,” said Maj. Roger Young, FWC Regional Commander. “If you boat under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you are endangering your life and the lives of others, and you will be arrested.”
In 2019, 32% of boating fatalities in Florida were determined to be alcohol or drug related. The FWC works year-round to remind boaters that boating while impaired by alcohol or drugs is dangerous and illegal. FWC officers continually patrol the waters looking for impaired operators who will face arrest if found to be operating under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
To report people who are operating boats dangerously or while impaired, call 1-888-404-FWCC (3922) or text Tip@MyFWC.com.