GAINESVILLE - The mother of a young boy who was killed in a jet ski accident on Lake Lanier last summer says she wants punishment to be tougher for those who violate new boating safety measures now moving through the State Senate.
Ashley Bell is the Gainesville attorney representing Tameka Raymond, whose son Kile Glover was killed when he was struck by a jet ski on July 6, 2012. The 11-year-old sustained severe brain injuries and died 15 days after the accident.
Bell, who is a weekly co-host on WDUN's Morning Talk, said Thursday morning that his client testified before Georgia lawmakers when legislation was introduced last week.
"It should be more than three years in jail for killing a kid innocently on the lake," said Bell. "What sort of reflection is that consequence to people saying 'if I run over somebody out here and they die, I get three years in jail'?"
Bell said Raymond's testimony before legislators was emotional.
"She was in tears before this committee. This was not a normal day at the Capitol," said Bell.
The 'Kile Glover Boat Education Law' does not restrict boating, but it should make it safer, according to Bell. Among other things, the law would require operators of personal watercraft to take a brief education course on operation of any craft.
Bell noted that the man who struck Glover had never been to Lake Lanier and had never operated a personal watercraft.
"[He] rents a jet ski and watches a tape on how to use a jet ski, jumps on it, and convinces himself that he is such an expert at driving this jet ski that he can get close to children and spray them with water," said Bell.
At the time of the accident, officials with the Department of Natural Resources said 38-year-old Jeffrey S. Hubbard ran over Glover and his 15-year-old sister; the two were riding on an inner tube being pulled by a pontoon boat.
Hubbard, who was a family friend, has yet to face charges in the accident.
The 'Kile Glover' bill is a companion piece of legislation with the "Jake and Griffin Prince BUI Law." The Prince brothers also died in a boating accident on Lake Lanier last summer.
Bell said the bills are currently being reviewed in the Senate Rules Committee.