An alleged drunken boater has been arrested for fatally striking a 34-year-old man with the boat’s propeller while the victim was swimming in Freeport over the weekend, Nassau County police said.

Raymond Balboa was driving a 50-foot Sea Ray boat with about a dozen people on board in Baldwin Bay when he stopped briefly so they could go swimming at 6:25 p.m. Sunday, police said.

The 53-year-old Baldwin man asked everyone get back on the boat, started the engines and began driving the boat while one guest, 34-year-old Cesar Hernandez-Rodas of Bay Shore, was still in the water, police said.

The victim was struck by the propeller and suffered severe lacerations before being brought on board the boat and taken to a nearby home, police said. He was then taken to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Investigators determined that Balboa showed signs of intoxication, police said.

Homicide Squad detectives charged Balboa with vehicular manslaughter, operating a vessel while intoxicated and operating an unregistered vessel.

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He will be arraigned Monday at First District Court in Hempstead.



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Timothy Bolger is the Managing Editor for the Long Island Press who’s been working to uncover unreported stories since shortly after it launched in 2003. When he’s not editing, getting hassled by The Man or fielding cold calls to the newsroom, he covers crime, general interest and political news in addition to reporting longer, sometimes investigative features. He won’t be happy until everyone is as pissed off as he is about how screwed up Lawn Guyland is.