Jackie Mott, who authorities allege was drunk and violating navigational rules last July when he ran his boat into a channel marker and killed an onboard passenger, was taken into custody Thursday morning in El Paso, Texas.
A warrant for Mott’s arrest had been issued Feb. 16. The arrest was confirmed by Bill Bishop, the First Judicial Circuit’s chief assistant state attorney for Okaloosa County.
Mott was taken into custody by El Paso Police around midnight at a “gentleman’s club” called Cabaret, according to agency spokesman Enrique Carrillo.
“Our dispatcher received a call from the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office about a possible wanted subject at that location with a vehicle description and description of the subject,” Carrillo said.
A black Excursion linked to Mott was discovered at the strip club and a bouncer identified Mott as the driver, Carrillo said. He was taken into custody without incident.
Officials at the El Paso County Detention Facility said Mott had been brought to the jail by El Paso Police at 10:35 a.m. A booking report indicates he may have been traveling under the alias of Jackie Coogan Fontnant, though Carrillo said Mott had not tried to disguise his identity.
El Paso is located on the western tip of Texas, just across the Rio Grande River from Mexico.
Mott, 34, of Valparaiso, was operating a 22-foot Mako center console fishing boat near Crab Island at just after midnight July 19 when he ran into a Choctawhatchee Bay channel marker, according to reports.
Anthony Jarab, 24, who was riding near the bow of the boat when the wreck occurred, was thrown toward the center console and killed, reports from the time of the accident said.
Two other passengers, Madison R. William, 18, of Niceville and Amber Doolan, 32, of Dripping Springs, Texas, were also injured in the collision, the FWC said.
One of the women suffered a laceration to her chin that required stitches and the other a separated elbow, according to a probable cause affidavit released Thursday by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.
The affidavit states that shortly before the accident Mott and three passengers boarded Mott’s boat at the dock behind AJ’s Seafood and Oyster Bar in Destin Harbor.
“Mott was traveling north through the Crab Island boating safety zone at a speed in excess of the slow speed mandated for the zone,” the report said. “Mott was not displaying the required navigation lights.”
The report said Mott struck the channel marker piling “in a head on collision path” and the channel marker was “snapped” as a result of the impact.
It said a blood draw following the accident showed Mott to be under the influence of controlled substances.
Mott faces charges of boating under the influence – manslaughter, vessel homicide, BUI causing serious bodily injury and violation of navigational rules.
The BUI – manslaughter and vessel homicide charges are second degree felonies. The BUI causing serious bodily injury is a third degree felony and the violation of navigational rules is a misdemeanor, Bishop said.
Mott has a long history of traffic infractions, both on the water and the streets of Okaloosa County. He was charged in 2014 with boating under the influence, but those charges were dropped even though a FWC report indicates Mott failed nearly all of the field sobriety tests he was given.
Mott served 72 days in the Okaloosa County Jail between July 25 and Oct. 4, 2017 after violating his probation by driving as a habitual offender with his license suspended or revoked. Court records show he had received a speeding ticket July 20, just 11 days after the fatal boating accident.
In 2009, Mott faced an Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office traffic charge of reckless driving causing serious bodily injury.
An arrest report in that case states Mott was driving a vehicle that was seen cutting in and out of traffic. He eventually lost control of the truck he was piloting, according to an arrest report, and plowed into a brick wall that served as a barrier between the street and a residential property.
Mott was released from jail about 45 minutes after being booked on the 2009 charge, according to Okaloosa County records. The charge was eventually reduced to misdemeanor reckless driving and a suspended year’s sentence was reworked to allow Mott to complete his probation by spending 10 consecutive weekends locked up at the county jail, court records show.
Okaloosa court records show at least 16 other occasions in which Mott got in trouble with the law for boating or driving offenses. Those records also indicate a history of domestic violence.