A pair of Florida fugitives who spent more than a decade on the run were convicted of the death of a diver this week after a segment on the “America’s Most Wanted” reboot led to their arrest.
Christopher Jones, 57, and Alison Gracie, 54, pleaded guilty in federal court Friday to the involuntary manslaughter of 36-year-old diver Amy Rhodes in the 2011 boating act, the Justice Department said.
Jones and Gracie – a British couple who ran a scuba company in Key Largo – were aware of major safety problems in their charter boat carrying Rhodes and five other passengers on December 18, 2011, according to federal prosecutors in Florida. She was
The shoddy-maintained, 25-foot vessel, called Gate Weight, “began to take water” and “sank about 30 feet to sea level,” prosecutors said.
“A criminal investigation following the death of the diver revealed that Jones and Gracie knew prior to the tragedy that the ship was in need of repair,” the DOJ said in a press release.
After the boat sank, a loose bench trapped Rhodes underwater.
“Made of bright material, the bench sprung toward the surface of the ocean as the ship sank. Two large and heavy objects collided, causing a passenger’s leg to hit the ship’s windshield. [She] Trapped and drowned,” the officials said.
After being away from US law enforcement for nearly 11 years, the couple were featured in Fox’s “America’s Most Wanted” in April 2021 with John Walsh — complete with what looks likely a decade after the tragedy. Happened.
Just four days after the show aired, he was arrested near Madrid, Spain.
The fugitives were soon extradited to the US, where they pleaded in South Florida federal court on Friday to “cause the death of another, without malice, during the commissioning of a … commercial dive charter”, court documents show. show.
The couple is to be sentenced in August.
A DOJ spokesperson did not immediately return a call Wednesday.