Skip to main content

The Journal Gazette

Friday, November 09, 2018 1:00 am

Nation

Duck boat captain charged in deaths

Associated Press

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The captain of a tourist boat that sank in southwest Missouri and killed 17 people, including nine members of an Indiana family, didn't tell passengers to put on flotation devices or prepare them to abandon ship even after waves crashed into the boat during a severe storm, according to an indictment released Thursday.

The federal indictment shows Kenneth Scott McKee faces 17 counts of misconduct, negligence or inattention to duty by a ship's officer resulting in death. The deaths occurred after the duck boat, a refurbished amphibious vessel originally used by the military during World War II, sank during a storm in July.

U.S. Attorney Tim Garrison said the 51-year-old McKee also is accused of failing to properly assess the weather before and after the boat went into Table Rock Lake near Branson.

Georgia governor candidate quits job

Republican Brian Kemp resigned Thursday as Georgia's secretary of state, removing himself from the ongoing count of the governor's election he says he's already won.

Returns show him with 50.3 percent of almost 4 million votes, about a 63,000-vote lead over Democrat Stacey Abrams. That's sufficient for the majority required for outright victory, but Abrams maintained there are enough uncounted ballots to force a December runoff in one of the marquee matchups of the 2018 midterm elections.

No abuse charges for ex-NY official

The special prosecutor investigating former New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said Thursday that she couldn't bring criminal charges over allegations he physically abused women he dated, in part, because current state law doesn't explicitly outlaw such behavior.

In closing the six-month investigation, Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas implored lawmakers to pass legislation to criminalize slapping, shoving and other violence committed for sexual gratification.

Months on lam end for giant pet lizard

Florida authorities have caught a huge lizard that has terrified residents of a suburban Miami neighborhood for months.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said Thursday the Asian water monitor lizard, an escaped pet, measures more than 8 feet long. Residents said it lurked in their backyards and scratched at their patio doors.

A wildlife commission statement says the lizard will be returned to its owner, who received a criminal citation for its escape.