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Nassau District Attorney Won’t Pursue Criminal Charges In L.I. Boat Tragedy

Says 'Unique Combination Of Circumstances' Led To Vessel's July 4 Capsizing
A boat that capsized, killing three children, is seen being lifted from the Long Island Sound on Wednesday, July 11, 2012. (credit: CBS 2)

A boat that capsized, killing three children, is seen being lifted from the Long Island Sound on Wednesday, July 11, 2012. (credit: CBS 2)

OYSTER BAY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) -- There was a big development Thursday afternoon in last year’s Fourth of July boating tragedy that killed three children off Oyster Bay.

Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice announced she will not pursue criminal charges in the case.

“The Office of the District Attorney has determined that no criminal charges are appropriate,” DA spokesman John Byrne told CBS 2 in a statement.

The tragedy occurred last year near the mouth of Oyster Bay, immediately following a fireworks display.

The boat, a 34-foot Silverton Cruiser, had 27 people on board, including 10 children.

The three children that died, Victoria Gaines, Harley Treanor and David Aureliano, were trapped in the cabin, investigators said.

The investigation uncovered a “unique combination of circumstances that led to this specific boat’s capsizing,” the DA’s office said.

Additionally, the investigation also “uncovered gaping holes in the maritime regulatory system and contributory design flaws in the vessel.”

“The combination of these factors proved to be deadly but cannot support criminal charges that require proof beyond reasonable doubt,” the DA’s office said.

Rice’s office also said that it would continue to investigate the tragedy and would issue findings and recommendations “at a later time.”

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