Pictured: Brad Becker after he was arrested for a hit and run boat collision that happened in August 2017 at Bartlett Lake. Photo courtesy of MCSO
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Information from local teen provides critical link in finding suspect in 2017 hit and run boat collision at Bartlett Lake

03/28/18

Tara Alatorre
Staff
PEORIA – On March 13, The Maricopa County Sheriff’s Department arrested 32-year-old Brad Becker for failing to remain at the scene of a boat collision that happened last August on Lake Bartlett.  The accident left a 15-year-old teen critically injured with life-threatening injuries that he is still recovering from today.
On August 5, 2017, Becker and his girlfriend’s 16-year-old daughter were aboard a fishing style boat when it collided with a See Doo jet ski operated by the teen victim Alec Medina, according to MCSO.
Becker stayed on the scene initially, but allegedly refused to put Medina on his watercraft, who had sustained a traumatic brain injury from the accident. Becker left the scene claiming that he was going to get help, but never returned, according to witnesses who arrived on the scene later to help the wounded teenager.
“Instead of going for help he fled,” said Sheriff Paul Penzone in a press conference.
One of the boaters who stopped to help Medina until first responders arrived was Michael Banach, who even offered a $1,000 reward for information about the incident; the reward later increased to $5,000 when other witnesses chipped in.
“This is an example of how powerful it is when not only a good Samaritan, but a good person…gives aide to help in a tragic circumstance, but then commits resources to help law enforcement solve a case,” said Sheriff Penzone.
Through a tip, detectives were made aware that Becker had been on a boat at the time of the crash with his girlfriend’s daughter. They were then able to identify and contact the teenager who was aboard the watercraft during the collision. 
MCSO detectives interviewed the teen at a Cave Creek residence on March 13, 2018, who is not being named because she is a minor and not charged with a crime at this time. The teenage girl recounted the event allegedly confirming Becker’s involvement and included details that apparently only eyewitnesses or investigators would know.
From that tip MCSO detectives also were able to track down and find a boat that was owned by the suspect and matched the description described by witnesses.   Then detectives located a fiberglass repair shop that had repaired the same suspected boat about a week after the accident that occurred last August, which ultimately lead to the arrest of Becker, according to MCSO.
“This is what exceptional police work looks like, it is an exceptional partnership with the community,” Penzone said.
Becker allegedly told law officials that he was at Bartlett Lake on August 5, 2017, and remembers seeing boaters helping the young man, but denied any involvement in the collison.  He was booked into the Fourth Avenue Jail on a class 5 felony for leaving the scene of an injury accident.
“The person who is responsible for this case was on parole from out of state, he has a criminal history,” said the Sheriff. “His actions are unacceptable and unforgivable.