Report: Alcohol not a factor in boating accident that severely injured Homer girl

Kaelynne Driscoll (provided photo)

Kaelynne Driscoll (provided photo)

SKANEATELES, N.Y. — Alcohol was not a factor in a July boating accident on Skaneateles Lake that severely injured an 8-year-old girl from Homer, according to media reports.

The girl's stepmom, 33-year-old Jamie Wheeler, who was later identified as the driver of the boat, was tested for alcohol at the scene, reported Friday. The results of her blood-alcohol test have not been released, but Onondaga County Assistant District Attorney Rick Trunfio tells the newspaper that Wheeler was not intoxicated at the time of the accident.

Wheeler was operating a 17-foot Bayliner boat, according to the Onondaga County Sheriff's Office. She is not expected to face any criminal charges, though she could be ticketed for "navigational infractions."

On July 6, Kaelynne Driscoll was tubing in the water with her father, Christopher, when they were struck by the boat's propellers. Christopher was released from Upstate University Hospital in a few days, while his daughter lost an arm and a leg and has undergone several surgeries since the accident. According to police, the father and daughter were aided by two nearby boaters, Eric Marcinowski and David Goetzmann, who helped bring them to shore.

Kaelynne is undergoing rehabilitation in Boston and is expected to return to the Cortland area this weekend, according to family members.

Trunfio also told that Jamie Wheeler's brother, a Cayuga County sheriff's deputy, was one of the first officers to respond to the scene.

The deputy, who was not identified, did not interfere with the police investigation, Trunfio said.