Guilty Plea in Boating Death May Affect Wrongful Death Lawsuit

A man accused of striking and killing a 10-year-old boy with a power boat has pleaded guilty to aggravated driving under the influence.

David Hatyina submitted the plea as part of a negotiated plea deal before Judge Clinton Hull of the Kane County Circuit Court. As part of the guilty plea, Hatyina admitted he had alcohol and drugs in his system when he struck and killed Anthony Borcia on Petite Lake on July 28, 2012. The plea is likely to affect the wrongful death lawsuit filed by the Borcia family against Hatyina and a passenger in his boat.

Hatyina remains free on $1 million bond and is due back in court for a pre-sentencing hearing on May 16, with sentencing scheduled for June. Judge Hull was appointed to preside over the case because the Borcia family has ties to a Lake County judge. Hull told Hatyina that he could be sentenced to a maximum of 14 years in prison, or could receive probation if the judge determines there are “outstanding circumstances” in the case.

Hatyina was first charged with reckless homicide and other charges that were dropped as part of the plea agreement. According to prosecutors, Hatyina ran over the boy with his boat, traveling at approximately 40 miles per hour, and was later found by police to have a blood alcohol content of .09 to .12 percent, and cocaine in his system.

The wrongful death lawsuit seeks damages in excess of $50,000 for the boy’s mother and for each member of his immediate family that witnessed the boy’s death.

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