Archive for Sunday, January 16, 2005

City briefs

January 16, 2005


Lawsuit still pending in motorboat fatality

A lawsuit against a motorboat driver involved in a deadly 2003 collision at Perry Lake is still pending in Jefferson County District Court.

Motorboat driver Andrew L. Petesch, Meriden, is being sued by both the driver of a houseboat and the heirs of a houseboat passenger who was killed in the wreck. The lawsuits, combined into one case, allege Petesch caused the Aug. 8, 2003, wreck by boating under the influence of alcohol.

Houseboat driver Roger L. Jeffers, Oskaloosa, is seeking $5 million in damages for injuries, lost wages and mental anguish. Brothers of passenger Jane A. Marschand, 57, Mission, are seeking compensation for expenses, bereavement, and the "significant conscious pain and suffering" they say she suffered before she died. The wreck happened about 9:49 p.m., but the first rescue boat didn't reach the scene until 10:27 p.m.

Petesch has argued he's not at fault, in part because the houseboat didn't get out of the way.

No trial date has been set. Jeffers is represented by attorney James L. Wisler, of Lawrence.


Gun charge brings 87-month sentence

A man arrested in a traffic stop in Ottawa was sentenced last week to 87 months in federal prison for being a felon in possession of a gun, U.S. Atty. Eric Melgren announced.

David A. Wright, 29, pleaded guilty in September to one count of illegally possessing a firearm after having three criminal convictions. He previously was convicted of distributing amphetamine and possessing methamphetamine, both felonies, and misdemeanor domestic battery.

Wright was released from prison in February 2004 but absconded from supervision in July. When he was arrested July 7 in Ottawa, U.S. marshals found a loaded .22-caliber handgun in his vehicle.

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