Local News

Raleigh family sues over drowning at Carolina Beach

Posted June 28, 2013

— The family of Geoffrey Okinyi, who drowned in 2011 off Carolina Beach, has filed a lawsuit against the town and leaders of the police and rescue squads claiming negligence.

Okinyi, 19, was on an inner tube with two friends when a wave knocked the trio into the water. None of the men could swim, police said.

The two men made it to the beach and told lifeguards that Okinyi was missing. Lifeguards found his body on the beach strand near Harper Avenue.


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  • my2cents-justsaying Jul 2, 2013

    Ahhh this one is easy ya'alll...good old contributory negligence!

  • dwntwnboy2 Jun 28, 2013

    3 people who KNEW they couldnt swim go into the ocean, 2 come out- and the family has the NERVE to sue the city? They were negligent by not teaching their child how to swim.

  • EnoughWhiningAlready Jun 28, 2013

    How in the world can the family (or anyone, for that matter) think the town is responsible for this boy's drowning? He couldn't swim. His companions couldn't swim. All 3 of them were in the water on a tube and DIDN'T KNOW HOW TO SWIM!! It's a shame the family suffered a tragic loss but it sounds to me like they are hoping for a payout here. Sad.

  • NC_GobblerHunter Jun 28, 2013

    Sorry for your lose but, when you go out in the ocean clinging to an inter-tube and not knowing how to swim you are asking for trouble. The only negligence I can see is; if they had gone up to a lifeguard and told 'en they could not swim and the lifeguard didn't try to stop them from doing such a stupid thing........

  • LEO 101 Jun 28, 2013

    Sorry to say this; but how is this lawsuit even allowed to be filed? It's sad for the family, but I feel like they are just seeking money. The parents should be sued for not looking after their own child

  • workingforthosethatwont Jun 28, 2013

    where were his parents during his irresponsible behavior? sorry he drowned but the town of CB isn't at fault.

  • mckangst Jun 28, 2013

    Apparently there was a mental issue or learning disability (who in their right mind would go into open water knowing they can't swim without a life vest). Was he under the legal supervision of anyone considering the disability? Seems like his parents would be aware of his condition -- I don't know if they are still legally responsible for him after age 19 but the town certainly was not.

  • Rebelyell55 Jun 28, 2013

    Wonder what genius lawyer actually taking this case?

  • Rebelyell55 Jun 28, 2013

    This will be interesting. I don't think they'll win.

  • justjean Jun 28, 2013

    Maybe someone should sue the parents for child abuse for not teaching their 19 year old how to swim. Geez!