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Driver of boat involved in crash that killed Lancaster teacher charged

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Posted at 6:13 PM, May 03, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-03 21:43:29-04

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — The driver of a boat that crashed into the Lake Erie break wall last May, killing a teacher from Lancaster, has been charged with a misdemeanor.

Michael Cronin, 46 of Lancaster, faced arraignment in Buffalo City Court Friday on one count of reckless operation of a vessel. He is also facing a violation under the navigation law of imprudent speed.

Cronin was operating the boat that slammed into the break wall near the Small Boat Harbor off Fuhrmann Boulevard on May 12. One of his passengers, Eric Przykuta, was thrown from the boat and killed.

Cronin, Przykuta and another man were returning to shore from fishing when the crash happened.

Przykuta, a 7th grade science teacher, taught in the Lancaster district for nearly 20 years. In addition to his work in the classroom, he also coached the modified lacrosse team and served as the Lancaster Central Teachers Association president for 10 years.

His widow has retained the Buffalo law office of Rosenthal, Kooshoian & Lennon, LLP to represent the family in legal proceedings.

The law firm has issued this statement on behalf of the Przykuta family:
"The Przykuta Family continues to bear the tragic loss of their beloved husband, father, son and brother due to the actions of Michael Cronin on May 12, 2018.
Although nothing can fill the tremendous void left by Eric’s untimely death, the Przykuta Family prays that justice will be served through the criminal prosecution of Michael Cronin.
On behalf of the Przykuta Family, we sincerely appreciate the continued prayers and support of the community during this extremely difficult time."

If convicted, Cronin faces a maximum of 30 days in jail and a fine of $500.