MIAMI – A Miami nightclub owner was sentenced Friday to four years of probation in the death of a woman who was found floating in the water in May 2015 near Matheson Hammock Park.
Russell Bruce pleaded no contest to a manslaughter charge in the death of Lauren Lamar, 26, who was reported missing after the boat on which she was traveling with Bruce and another woman returned from Stiltsville in Biscayne Bay.
Bruce briefly apologized to Lamar’s family in court.
“It was a very tragic day. I’m sorry for your loss,” he said.
Bruce and Alicia Bartolotta were arrested after Lamar’s body was found floating face down in the water on May 25, 2015.
According to police, Bruce and Bartolotta claimed that they thought Lamar was sleeping below deck while they were on the boat and didn’t see or hear her fall into the water.
Miami Herald reporter David Ovalle reported that prosecutors admitted that they couldn’t prove that Lamar could have been saved from the rough waters if Bruce had called 911 after she fell off the boat.
Bruce and his partner own the nightclub Steam and a speakeasy called Railroad Blues.
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