Trial for a man accused of piloting a boat that caused the death of a Cleveland woman is set to begin Wednesday.
Deontae Cortez Davis Sr., 33, was taken into custody after a Bradley County grand jury issued an indictment for his arrest on a vehicular homicide charge regarding the August 2011 death of Misty Rymer Thompson, 32.
Davis and Thompson were boating on the Hiwassee River on the evening of Aug. 10, 2011, when Thompson was killed, according to Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency officer Ben Davis.
TWRA’s Davis reported investigators learned Thompson and Davis had launched the boat from the Charleston Boat Dock at 7 p.m. Davis was piloting the watercraft.
Just after 7:30 p.m., initial 911 calls were received about a boat crash near the Resolute (AbitibiBowater) Calhoun Newsprint Operations plant, agent Davis said.
“They (Deontae Davis and Thompson) traveled downstream from the Charleston Boat Dock and Highway 11 bridge and struck a concrete walk which is used for barge tie-offs,” Davis said.
Passersby on the Hiwassee River attempted to help Thompson and reportedly aided Bradley County Emergency Medical Service personnel at the scene. Thompson was transported to the banks of the river, then to SkyRidge Medical Center, where she died of head trauma, according to officials.
Deontae Davis was not injured during the crash, according to agent Davis.
During the course of the investigation, Bradley County Sheriff’s Office deputies helped TWRA map the area with the TotalStation system that allows a 3-D re-creation of the scene in hopes of determining what caused the fatal boat incident.
Early reports by local television media stated the boaters had struck a pole in the water.
Agent Davis said early in the preliminary investigation he didn’t know what the boat might have struck, but investigators with Bradley County Sheriff’s Office Traffic Unit recreated the crash scene and reportedly determined the victim had struck the concrete walkway, causing her death.
Davis was arraigned in Bradley County Criminal Court on Aug. 13, 2012, and has been awaiting trial on the vehicular homicide charge.