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Boat captain won't face charges in death of 11-year-old junior lifeguard


Orange County prosecutors have decided not to file charges against a marine safety officer whose boat struck and killed Huntington Beach junior lifeguard Allyssa Squirrell.

Authorities determined the incident was an accident.

The accident occurred in July when 11-year-old Allyssa was participating in a training exercise known as a speed drop, in which junior lifeguards drop into the water off a moving rescue boat.

She was struck by propellers when the boat circled around to pick up the swimmers, and she later died in surgery. It was the first fatal accident since the Huntington Beach program began in 1964.

Lt. Greg Crow, who piloted the boat that hit her, had 32 years of experience.

Hundreds attended a memorial for the girl. "She was having the best summer as a Huntington Beach junior lifeguard," the family wrote in a note on display. "She adored the program, loved the structure and would challenge herself daily to be the best she could be."

-- Shelby Grad

Photo: KTLA

Comments () | Archives (16)

Why can I comment on this, but not on important issues like the Health Care bill, or George Skelton's timely tax coverage?

hear, hear!
to previous comment...

Agreed, its like you choose what articles to NOT allow comments. What is up with that? Is it a space issue, too many posts to review? I could understand that, but is there a policy you can refer us to?

Right, pure censorship. Sometimes the editors allow comments then pull the plug when they don't like the result, e.g. their pet politicians or issues are getting gored. Get out of the censorship business, LAT!

I too am upset at the comment policy. Why this but not the significant issues that materially affect Angelenos? It's tragic but does not affect our lives in any way close to that of our health care and economic issues.

If the caption was driving a vehicle and accidentally killed a person, do you think the prosecutors would come up with the same decision? Doesn't the caption have some responsibility when young swimmers are in the area? What the hell was he looking at?

Not an easy decision for the prosecutor, but damn, some responsibility for a 23 year old experienced caption?

Editor's note: We too would like to offer readers the chance to comment on all of our stories and hope to do so in the near future. The issue is a technical one involving the system that publishes our stories (as opposed to our blog posts).

Thanks for your patience,
Martin Beck, assistant Metro editor

My sincere condolences to the family of the young lady. They must be devastated by her loss, to this day.

I must also agree with the previous comments--the LA Times has a puzzling comment policy. Stories that cry out for comments do not allow them, while those where comments are allowed are often not needed. Can you please correct this?

Mr. Editor,
Please also explain why you seem to always provide the Comments postings when it involves the Death Penalty or Gay Marriage Rights?
Anything to do with an agenda, maybe????

They censor like the good old Pravda... Stalin is smiling in hell looking at the oh so liberal LA Times and all the other self-serving liberals in CA

Hear Hear!!

I really don't see how it is a technical problem as stated. If you can do it for one story you have the capability to do it for all.

I agree, comments on the REAL issues or good riddance for the LATimes.

And I too will add to the previous comments re: censoring of opinions.
Hey LA Times, people of intelligence can actually disagree with you! This whole Internet thing and having to interact with your readers has been a pain in the but, hasn't it?

Sorry, Martin, I don't buy it. It's selective censorship, plain and simple. (I know this won't be posted, just like my comment the other day wasn't). Look to the SF Gate for a model. They've got real-time posting and reader reporting of abuse over there. It makes for a much livelier and honest discussion.

Hello rabid commentors... WHAT'S WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE? Did any of you notice that this is a follow-up story to a tragic accident that took the life of young girl and devastated at least two families? You all seem so eager to spew about censorship and the evil LA Times, all but 2 out of 13 you (at the time I wrote this) even mentioned the tragedy of the actual story.
My deepest sympathy and empathy go out to the family of this young girl who lost their hopes and dreams, as well as to the boat captain and his family.
And my pity to those of you who so readily ignore the human tragedy here in your desperation for any soapbox from which to shout out your venom. Shame on you.

Everet - previous news articles reported that this jr. lifeguard wound up on the opposite side of boat from the designated pick up point.


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