THE HEARTBROKEN dad of a girl killed in a speedboat horror has told how her date was drunk while driving – but will soon be released from jail.
Charlotte Brown, 24, was thrown from Jack Shepherd’s boat when it capsized on the River Thames in December 2015.
He was jailed for six years in April 2019, for manslaughter by gross negligence.
But the following year, he had almost three months slashed from his sentence and could now be freed next month.
Now Charlotte’s dad Graham Brown, 60, has told of her family’s disappointment that he could soon be released.
“She was 24 years old – she had her life robbed from her.
“For the family the heartache is the main thing. Nothing will replace losing Charlotte but mostly for us we still don’t know what happened because sheppard absconded from his trial.”
Shepherd was interviewed by police immediately after the tragedy before he cowardly fled the UK for Georgia.
He spent ten months on the run as Charlotte’s family faced an agonising wait for justice.
Shepherd was sentenced to six years in prison in 2018 after being convicted of manslaughter in his absence.
He eventually handed himself into local authorities in Georgia and even tried protesting his innocence in front of TV cameras.
Mr Brown explained: “My daughter had never been on a speedboat. His version just doesn’t stack up and we don’t know what happened.
“This was my first date. She had a bad day at work. I’m sure she thought she was just going slowly up the thames.
“We’ll probably never know what happened because he won’t come out and tell us.
“Police didn’t do a blood test after the crash but he was three times over the drink driving limit
“When he was pulled from the water his speech was slurred and he stunk of alcohol.
“She was a sensible kid and she must have been terrified.”
On the night Charlotte died, Shepherd tried to impress her with a late-night trip past the Houses of Parliament after dinner at the Shard.
He had been drinking heavily before the tragedy, while English literature graduate Charlotte barely touched a drop on their first date.
Harrowing footage showed him racing down the Thames in his faulty speedboat moments before it hit a log and flipped over.
Charlotte, who died shortly after hitting the river from cold water immersion, could be heard screaming: “Oh my God, you’re going so fast”.
Shepherd, who got married and had a child after the crash, could now be released automatically in January – the halfway point of his sentence.