TARPON SPRINGS, Fla. (WFLA) – Investigators are searching for a man who allegedly ran his boat into a dock on Bayshore Drive on the Fourth of July. The man left the scene.
The owner of the damaged dock shared her story exclusively with News Channel 8 said she wants the driver of the boat to take responsibility for his actions.
In the back of Pat Stevens’ home on the Anclote River, there’s plenty of dock left. However, at the end, all you can see is twisted metal and pilings sheered off. The boat lift on the end of the dock is in pieces.
“Well, I was very very disappointed to think that someone would ram into my dock out there and not even bother telling me about it,” Stevens said.
Stevens, who had the dock custom built with her husband more than a decade ago, says she was sitting home around 10 a.m. Monday when the hit-and-run accident happened.
She didn’t see or hear anything – but a neighbor did. That neighbor snapped a photo of the 30-foot twin engine boat that crashed into the dock. Before leaving the scene, the boat’s driver looked directly into the lens.
“If it was an accident that happened, that would be one thing,” Stevens said. “But people probably had too much to drink or something over the holiday. Maybe they were drinking; it could be any number of things.”
She said it’s not just about the damage to the dock, but more so about all the family memories that were made out there. “Fond memories of being out; Lots of them, raising the children and everything. I had three of them, and we all loved boats. Those memories are so embedded in me all the years,” Stevens said.
As for the guy behind the wheel, Stevens wants one thing. “I think he should be brought to justice. I really do. To me, it’s wrong,” she said.
Stevens does have insurance on the dock and says it will be rebuilt. The damage is estimated to be around $10,000.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission is investigating.