Judge dismisses criminal counts in Missouri duck boat deaths

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In this July 23, 2018, file photo the duck boat that sank on July 19 in Table Rock Lake in Branson, Mo., is raised. The company that owns the boat that sank, killing 17 people, has settled the first of several lawsuits filed in the accident. (Nathan Papes/The Springfield News-Leader via AP)

LIBERTY, Mo. — A federal judge has dismissed neglect and misconduct charges against three employees of a tourist boat that sank on a Missouri lake in 2018, killing 17 people.

U.S. District Judge Doug Harpool filed an order Wednesday upholding a recommendation made in September.

The boat captain, the general manager of the boat’s operator, and the manager on duty that day were charged with neglect and misconduct after the amphibious vehicle sank during a storm on Table Rock Lake near Branson.

The captain also was charged with failure to properly assess the weather and not telling passengers to use flotation devices.

Riders from Missouri, Indiana, Illinois and Arkansas were killed.

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