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3 Branson duck boat employees charged in connection to 2018 sinking that killed 17

NTSB: Canopies, side curtains should be removed from duck boats following tragic sinking
Posted at 9:35 AM, Jul 16, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-16 10:35:58-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — State criminal charges have been filed in the 2018 duck boat incident that claimed the lives of 17 people in Branson, Missouri.

On Friday, Stone County Prosecuting Attorney Matt Selby and Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt announced charges against three employees of Ride the Ducks Branson.

Kenneth Scott McKee, Charles Baltzell and Curtis Lanham face charges in the July 19, 2018 incident.

Captain Scott McKee is charged with 17 counts of first-degree involuntary manslaughter (Class C felony), five counts of endangering the welfare of a child (Class A felony) and seven counts of first-degree endangering the welfare of a child (Class D felony).

McKee was operating the duck boat when it entered Table Rock Lake during a severe thunderstorm warning and eventually took on water and sunk.

Operations supervisor Charles Baltzell was charged with 17 counts of first-degree involuntary manslaughter for failing to communicate conditions and cease operations.

For the same reason, general manager Curtis Lanham was also charged with 17 counts of first-degree involuntary manslaughter.