Daily Herald - Suburban Chicago's source for news This copy is for personal, non-commercial use. To order presentation-ready copies for distribution you can: 1) Use the "Reprint" button found on the top and bottom of every article, 2) Visit reprints.theygsgroup.com/dailyherald.asp for samples and additional information or 3) Order a reprint of this article now.
Article updated: 8/16/2012 2:31 PM

Suspect in fatal boating crash had prior OUI conviction

By Lee Filas

The Bartlett man who faces alcohol- and drug-related charges in the boating death of a 10-year-old Libertyville boy, has a prior conviction for operating a boat while intoxicated on the Chain O' Lakes, Lake County authorities said Thursday.

Prosecutors attempted to have bail increased for David Hatyina, 50, for not informing prosecutors and Lake County circuit court Judge George Bridges that he had been arrested and convicted in a 1996 operating under the influence case.

However, after learning Hatyina turned over his passport to authorities -- reducing his ability to be a flight risk -- Bridges decided to allow him to remain free on $1 million bond.

"We respect the judge's decision," Assistant State's Attorney Ari Fisz said after the bond hearing.

Hatyina is accused of having alcohol and cocaine in his system while operating a boat that struck and killed Tony Borcia on Petite Lake on July 28, authorities said.

He is charged with five counts of aggravated operating under the influence that resulted in death, and two counts of reckless homicide.

Hatyina was freed earlier this week after 10 percent of his $1 million bail was posted.

An attorney for the Borcia family was in court for Thursday's bond hearing, but refused to talk to the media as he left the courtroom.

The fatal accident occurred when Borcia and his 12-year-old sister were riding on an inner tube towed by a boat operated by his father, Jim Borcia, about 4:35 p.m.

A wave caused the boy to fall into the water and Borcia's father immediately turned the boat to pick up his son, Fisz said. Family members saw Hatyina's 29-foot Baja speed boat bearing down on the boy and waved to try to alert the boat operator. However, the boat ran over Borcia, killing him at the scene, officials said.

Investigators from the Illinois Conservation Police determined through blood samples that Hatyina had taken cocaine before the accident, Fisz said. Blood tests revealed he also had a blood alcohol content of between .09 percent and .128 percent -- above the legal limit -- at the time of the crash.

During his initial bond hearing Tuesday, Hatyina indicated he had never been arrested or convicted of a crime, and never charged with any drug- or alcohol-related offense, Fisz said.

Hatyina's 1996 conviction was discovered following a thorough search of his name, Fisz said. Hatyina's name was misspelled when it was initially put into the court computers, which is why it took a couple of extra days to discover it, Fisz added.

Fisz refused to release details of the 1996 conviction, except to say in court that Hatyina pleaded guilty and successfully served one year of court supervision.

Hatyina was not under oath when he provided the inaccurate information in the initial bond hearing and cannot be charged with perjury, Fisz said.

On Thursday, Bridges slightly admonished Hatyina and his defense attorney, Frank Howard of Park Ridge, for not mentioning the previous arrest.

Howard told Bridges that Hatyina did not intend to mislead prosecutors or the court about the previous conviction, but was led to believe the conviction was off his record because he completed court-ordered supervision.

"I don't think it's to be expected for a lay person to understand how (the court system) works," Howard said.

Hatyina is due back in court Sept. 10 for arraignment unless additional charges are filed against him.

Bridges also warned Hatyina to refrain from using alcohol and drugs, submit to random drug tests, and must not operate a boat of any kind.

Copyright © 2014 Paddock Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.