Both boaters involved in summer crash facing charges; first trial set for Monday

LACONIA — The pilots of both boats that collided near Governor's Island on the night of June 21, leaving some of the occupants with serious injuries, are scheduled to stand trial in 2014.

Barry Myers, 50, of Dracut, Mass is charged with one count of boating while under the influence of alcohol. His trial is scheduled for Monday morning. Myers is also charged with a violation for allegedly not having on the proper lights.

Dr. Brenda Stowe, 51, of Gilford is charged with a violation of the rules of operating a vessel for failing to keep to the right when approaching another vessel.

The crash occurred about 10:25 p.m. about 300 yards off the shore of Lake Winnipesaukee between the Governor's Island bridge and Saunders Bay. Of the five total occupants on both boats, four — two from each boat — were taken to the hospital for a variety of injuries ranging from broken bones to internal injuries.

At the time Marine Patrol reported both boats were heavily damaged and towed from the scene.

According to documents obtained from the 4th Circuit Court, Laconia Division, Myers will present an expert witness, Dr. William A. Stuart, who is expected to testify that one of the people on Myers' boat who was taken to Lakes Region General Hospital, and whose blood alcohol level was tested there, had testified at an administrative hearing that his blood alcohol content was well below the legal boating limit of 0.08 percent and that he had consumed more alcohol prior to the accident than had Myers.

Stowe has filed for an affirmative defense. She says she was headed toward her home on Dockham Shore Road and had begun turning left from the open water. She said she saw a single white light heading toward her at a high rate of speed but that she didn't see any bow lights.

She said when she realized the driver of the boat (Myers) didn't see her, she made a split second decision to make a hard left and increase her speed to try to avoid the collision.

Rather that hit head on, Myers boat "T-boned" hers, said a Marine Patrol sergeant.

The state says that if she had stayed to the right, the collision may have been averted. Stowe said he was coming head on and keeping her course and trying to speed out of the way averted a head-on collision that could have produced even more serious injuries.

Stowe's trial is scheduled for early February.