Story Archive

Quite the Spectacle

Benjamin Urbelis, 33, was out on his boat with friends near Spectacle Island, in Boston Harbor, Mass. As the group was swimming around the boat, the engine started and the propeller cut off 19-year-old Nicole Berthiaume’s arm. Urbelis was arrested and charged with negligent operation of a boat and operating under the influence. Urbelis pled not guilty, claiming that, though he had been drinking, he was swimming too, and not on the boat when the incident happened. After further investigation, prosecutors charged law student Alexander Williams, 24, as the person who actually started the engine. But Williams’ lawyer, Joe Serpa, said Williams was not a qualified boat captain and was in a panic. “The only qualified operator of that boat jumped off,” Serpa said. “Anything that happened after that was a tragic accident.” Urbelis’s boat is named Naut Guilty. Urbelis is a part owner of Boston’s Julep Bar — and is a drunk driving defense attorney. (MS/Boston Globe) ...Free round of Juleps with every acquittal.
Original Publication Date: 12 July 2015
This story is in True’s book collections, in Volume 22.

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