Boat Crash

Survivors of Fatal Bimini Boat Crash Share Details of the Incident as Authorities Investigate

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Attorneys for the two survivors of a deadly boat crash in Bimini are sharing the details of what happened.

Attorney Yvette Reyes says that on July 2nd, Javier Perez and his girlfriend Carolyn Alvarez met Josbel Fernandez and his girlfriend, Violeta Khouri, for the first time in Bimini.

A few hours later that evening, the four got on Fernandez’s boat for a ride.

Reyes told NBC 6 that Perez and Alvarez were sitting towards the front of the 32-foot Everglades vessel, while the captain, Fernandez, and his girlfriend Khouri were in a center console, underneath a covering.

Around 11:08 p.m., Reyes said they crashed. “This was a tragic horrible accident for everyone that was involved,” he said.

Perez died, and Alvarez is still missing at sea, presumably dead.

Reyes said Fernandez and Khouri both regained consciousness at some point, and looked for the other couple. 

“He also yelled out for them and could not find them,” said Reyes. “He immediately began to reach out on every single channel available on the boat, asking for help.”

Reyes said authorities got there around 12:30 a.m., almost an hour and a half later.

“We don’t know why it took so long,” said Reyes. “We don’t know why it took so long for the Bahamian authorities to get there.”

Perez and Alvarez’s families said they want answers.

"We don't know if she was kidnapped, if she was murdered, sex trafficking, thrown overboard, eaten by the sharks,” said Alvarez’s mother. “I have no idea."

“There were even allegations to the extent that perhaps the missing young lady, Carolyn Alvarez, had been the victim of sex trafficking, and that this was all some sort of a ruse to disguise that,” said Reyes. “Nothing could be further from the truth.”

Reyes said her client, Fernandez, was desperate to find help that night. 

“Both Josbel and Violeta at all points in time cooperated with the Bahamian authorities and insisted that they launch a search and rescue for Javier and Carolyn.”

Authorities said they collected alcoholic drinks from the boat for evidence.

NBC 6 asked the attorneys if Fernandez told them he had been drinking before the crash.

“We don’t have enough information to be able to give any answer with respect to that question,” attorney Raul Chacon responded.

They sent their condolences to the families.

“Our hearts go out to the family, we cannot even imagine what they’re going through,” said Reyes.

Authorities do not suspect foul play. However, the incident is still under investigation.

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