Cody John Binkley was yesterday on charges that include Homicide by Watercraft while Under the Influence and Involuntary Manslaughter, for the fatal May 7, 2018, boat crash at the Dock Street Dam in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. A criminal affidavit accompanying the charges filed with Magisterial District Judge Gregory D. Johnson states that Binkley, 26 of Palmyra, was in control of the watercraft (a Terry Jonboat) at approximately 9:20 PM on May 7th when the craft hit the Dock Street Dam throwing himself, his fiancée Mary Bredbenner and his 3-year-old daughter Madeline Binkley into the Susquehanna River. Binkley was eventually able to swim to shore. His fiancée and daughter both drowned in the river.
According to the affidavit, a blood test reveled that Binkley had marijuana in his system at the time of the crash. It is illegal to operate a watercraft in Pennsylvania with any level of marijuana in your system. The affidavit states that the levels of marijuana in Binkley’s system indicate that he had ingested the marijuana just prior to, or during the time period he was operating the watercraft.
A camera, owned by the Susquehanna River Basin Commission and located on a building near the river and the Dock Street Dam, captured the crash on video. The video shows Binkley’s boat emerge from under the I-83 bridge and upon approaching the Dock Street Dam, turn eastward, running parallel to the dam before turning north again and striking the dam head on. The video, filed with the criminal complaint, is attached below.
The charges filed against Binkley are:
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