TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - The trial of a man charged in a teenager’s death on Lake Palestine in 2019 has been rescheduled.
Jeffrey Joe Hampton’s trial was scheduled to begin on July 27. The date has been pushed back to Oct. 12 due to rulings from the Texas Supreme Court that prevent jury trials from happening until Sept. at the earliest.
A pre-trial hearing is scheduled for Sept. 25 to discuss how the trial will move forward. Judge Christi Kennedy said the court is being strongly urged to explore virtual options.
Hampton is charged with manslaughter and boating accident involving death or serious bodily injury. Those charges stem from June 2, 2019 when 14-year-old Roberto Carlos Bermejo Hernandez died after being struck by a boat while playing with friends and family in the water at Lakeway Harbor.
The boat fled the scene and the Smith County Sheriff’s Office later identified Hampton as the driver.