(Missourinet) – Families of individuals killed when a duck boat sank in southwest Missouri July 19th are objecting to efforts of federal prosecutors to freeze their lawsuits.
The Kansas City Star reports attorneys for some of the victims filed documents in federal court last week, saying the suits were brought to get answers to what happened and to ensure it does not happen to someone else’s family. The document says the efforts of the United States Attorney to delay closure for the victims will only prolong their suffering.
Kansas City attorney Gerald McGonagle represents three daughters of a Higginsville couple who died in the tragedy. The Star reports that McGonagle said the delay “keeps these wounds open” and doesn’t allow the families to move on. Federal prosecutors filed court documents August 29th in Kansas City seeking an order to delay any discovery in the lawsuits until a criminal investigation is over. It further seeks to prevent attorneys in those suits from sharing information and evidence they’ve gathered, stating that such activity could harm the criminal case.
The Coast Guard referred the investigation to federal prosecutors on Aug. 13. No criminal charges have been filed resulting from the Duck Boat mishap that killed 17 people on Table Rock Lake near Branson.