Man Pleads Guilty To Fatal Lake Eufaula Boat Crash

Friday, August 21st 2015, 1:15 pm
By: News On 6

A man has pleaded guilty to being drunk, crashing his speeding boat and killing a man on Lake Eufaula in 2013.

Ryan Shumway, 31, left the scene of the July 4, 2013 crash, even though two little girls had broken legs and their grandfather, Gary McIninch, 55, was missing in the water.

McIninch’s body was recovered two days later, and Shumway turned himself in four days after the fatal crash.

Shumway was sentenced on Friday for felony manslaughter and misdemeanor failure to render aid. He was given six months in the county jail and will serve no less than 85 percent of the time.

"We fought for that from day one," widow Linda McIninich said. "From Day One, they said it was only a misdemeanor and we fought. We didn't understand why you kill a man and it be a misdemeanor and not a felony."

7/31/2014 Related Story: Boat Driver Sued In Fatal Lake Eufaula Collision

According to a civil lawsuit the family filed in 2013, McIninch "placed his body between Ryan Shumway's careening boat and his granddaughters," and the impact knocked him overboard his stationary pontoon boat, which was displaying the required light for darkness.

McIninch’s granddaughters, then ages 8 and 10,suffered “pecuniary damages, physical pain and suffering, disfigurement and extreme mental anguish, according to the family’s lawsuit against Shumway.

Court records show Ryan Shumway has a series of arrests beginning in 2001 for public intoxication and possessing a beer while being under 21.

In 2004, Shumway was convicted of assaulting a law enforcement officer, in 2007, he pleaded guilty to transporting an open container, and in 2010, he was sentenced to a year of probation on a DUI charge.

8/21/2014 Related Story State ME 'Destroys' Man's Wedding Ring, Wife Wants Questions Answered

In another twist in the case, Linda McIninich asked the medical examiner to return her husband’s wedding band after his death. Months later, after requiring her to obtain a letter from the district attorney to get the ring back, the ME’s office told her they destroyed the ring.

When News On 6 requested records about Gary McIninich’s personal belongings, we were told we would have to obtain a court order to receive the records. Board members refused to return our calls and emails about the issue last year.

The attorney general and governor said they had no power to wield in the situation.

According to Linda McIninch, the ME’s office finally told her they changed the policies and offered her money, which she refused.