Widow of Anderson Co. deputy who died during on-water training session files suit


The widow of an Anderson County deputy who died during a training exercise has filed a federal wrongful death lawsuit.

Deputy Devin Hodges died on Lake Hartwell in June of 2017.

In the lawsuit, his wife alleges the Army Corps of Engineers was negligent in operating the Anderson County Sheriff's Office boat during the exercise.

The lawsuit claims the instructor did not use a safety lanyard or kill switch while attempting an emergency-stop maneuver, causing the three occupants to be thrown from the boat.

The suit alleges the instructor knew of the dangers the emergency-stop posed to the passengers, but still attempted it without the safety lanyard.

The Anderson County Coroner's Office ruled Hodges' death as an accidental drowning. The coroner said when the boat flipped over, Hodges' life vest became tangled in the boat propeller and caused him to be trapped under the boat.

The instructor was previously charged with reckless homicide, but the charges were dropped in October of 2017.

Attorney Kenneth Berger said that the suit was filed on behalf of the widow and her children. Berger said the family is asking for privacy.

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