Suspect now charged with homicide for death of father, 4-year-ol - KXXV Central Texas News Now

Suspect now charged with homicide for death of father, 4-year-old struck by houseboat

(Source: Bell County Jail) (Source: Bell County Jail)
(Source: KXXV Viewer) (Source: KXXV Viewer)
(Source: GoFundMe) (Source: GoFundMe)

The man arrested and charged with criminally negligent homicide after he allegedly struck a 4-year-old with a houseboat has now been charged with the same charge for the death of the little girl's father. 

Jason Bernal, 43, from Killeen, was arrested and charged with criminally negligent homicide after he allegedly struck a 4-year-old girl with a houseboat on June 23. 

Bernal was charged July 7 for the death of the girl's father. The father, Patrick Oliver, died from his injuries on July 6. 

According to Bernal's lawyer, they have worked with the Bell County District Attorney's Office and Temple police to coordinate a safe and efficient booking on the second complaint. Bernal original bond was set at $200,000 bond but a judge lowered his bond to $75,000 on July 13.

He was bonded out of jail on July 13 at 9:41 p.m.

Bernal was out on bond from the previous charge. He was booked into the Bell County Jail on Monday morning. 

4-year-old Kaitlyn Oliver died from her injuries on June 23 at 7:45 p.m. at Scott and White Hospital according to Temple Police Department.

Justice of the Peace David Barfield has ordered an autopsy for Kaitlyn.

Kaitlyn and her father, Patrick, were taken to the hospital after a houseboat ran over them at Temple Lake Park on Lake Belton.

According to police, the 4-year-old girl was playing in the water when a houseboat backed up and ran over her. She became tangled in the propeller, receiving lacerations all over her body. Temple police said her father jumped in to save her, but became tangled up in the propeller as well.

The propeller severed both of his legs. 

According to the arrest affidavit, a witness said that she told the driver of the boat not to park in this area because of the children swimming. The same witness also said she attempted to help the man and child during the incident. She said that the boat was in full throttle while backing up. 

Another witness said she was shouting at the driver that there were people behind the boat when it began to back up.

The arrest affidavit said that Bernal told police he yelled "Clear," and no one responded to him. Bernal told police he was backing up the boat when someone told him to stop, and he said he could not see what was happening because his boat was three-stories tall.

Several agencies responded to the scene, including Temple Police Department, Temple Fire and Rescue, Morgan's Point Police, Morgan's Point Dive Team, Texas Parks and Wildlife, and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. 

The Crotty Funeral Home in Belton will cover the expenses of the 4-year-old and her father's funeral for the family. You can donate to Kaitlyn Oliver's GoFundMe page here.

Temple police continue to investigate the case. 

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