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Charges Dropped for 1 in Fatal Boat Crash

Jun 27, 2013

A Burlington man no longer faces criminal charges in connection with a fatal boat crash that occurred in May 2012.

Joseph Schier, Jr., 21, had been charged with one count of boating while intoxicated causing death and four counts of involuntary manslaughter.

District Court Judge John Wright dismissed the charges, though, per a recommendation from the Des Moines County Attorney’s office.

Schier, Jr. was piloting one of the two small boats that collided on the Mississippi River, killing four young adults.

Assistant County Attorney Jennifer Baily filed the motion to dismiss.

She claimed the state no longer believes it can prove its case against Schier, Jr., beyond a reasonable doubt, on any of the five counts.

Court documents show that was based on depositions from about 30 witnesses and the results of toxicology reports.

Charges are still pending against Douglas Metcalf, 22, of Burlington.  Metcalf was piloting the other boat.

Metcalf's attorney filed new motions to suppress evidence this week.