Charges against Gocksch ’12 dismissed

No criminal charges will be filed against Michael Gocksch ’12, the driver in the May 26 crash that killed Marina Keegan ’12.

Gocksch appeared in Orleans District Court at 2 p.m. Thursday for a hearing after Massachusetts State Police sought charges of negligent homicide with a motor vehicle and reckless driving against him. The magistrate judge found no probable cause for the charges, which were dismissed without prejudice within an hour, a court clerk said Thursday afternoon.

Gocksch was driving east along Cape Cod’s Route 6 when he lost control of his 1997 black Lexus, causing the car to drift into a guardrail and roll over at least twice, according to state police.

Keegan’s parents, Tracy and Kevin Keegan, told the News in May that Gocksch had fallen asleep at the wheel and that Keegan was sleeping in the passenger seat, with her chair reclined. Both Gocksch and Keegan were wearing seatbelts at the time, and police said speed did not appear to be a factor in the crash.

Keegan’s parents have supported Gocksch since police announced they would seek charges against him two weeks ago, and were by his side in court on Thursday, NBC affiliate WHDH reported.

Gocksch’s attorney said the Keegans sent letters and made phone calls to state police asking them not to pursue charges, WHDH reported.

“The thing about it, there was no speeding, no recklessness involved, no negligence,” Tracy Keegan told WHDH. “He certainly wishes it was him and not her who suffered the fatality.”

Following the crash, Keegan was declared dead at the scene and Gocksch was taken to Cape Cod Hospital, where he was released later that day.


  • The Anti-Yale

    I am inspired and ennobled as a human being to read of the the selfless, generous behavior of the Keegan family toward this unfortunate young man.

    Paul D. Keane

    M. Div. ’80

  • imnewtoo

    No one deserves to feel like he or she should have died. I feel so sorry for everyone in this case and I hope Mr. Gocksch can find some solace in the fact that, I’m sure, Marina Keegan wouldn’t have wanted him to have died, either. A recovery will be difficult but the first step is to realize that you don’t deserve to feel the weight of death on your shoulders for the rest of your life.

  • wellwell

    My boyfriend, a passenger, was killed in a car crash four years ago, and it has taken me that entire time to stop feeling guilty about it and to come to terms with my grief. I remember the months after his death as the darkest days of my life. Now, though I still think of him every day, my memories are of happier times that we had together, and the hideous pain of the loss has softened to a bittersweet ache. My heart goes out to Michael and to the Keegans.

  • observer

    Lucky he’s a Yale grad himself, otherwise he’d be facing a stiff prison firm.

    • Branford73

      More likely the dismissal came from the support he had from Marina’s family and the lack of any evidence of criminality.


    • Yale12

      Show me one case in which somebody was EVER given a prison term for innocently falling asleep at the wheel despite the fact that the family of the deceased asked not to press charges.

      • jrch1

        I agree this was a terrible tragedy, but I am having trouble with your wording: “innocently” falling asleep at the wheel. No doubt he felt the symptoms of fatigue before the crash — heavy eyelids, starting to nod off. Many of us have experienced this while driving, but we ignore and keep going because it’s too inconvenient to pull over. I hope I will never forget this lesson that driving tired is as reckless as drunk driving. Even if it wasn’t the parents’ wishes, I do think he should have been charged.

        • The Anti-Yale

          This is playing God. You were not inside his head. Take your own inventory, not this young man’s.


  • ms2676

    my goodness, you people are aweful. The man lost control of his car, his girlfriend was tragiclly killed..he has to live with that the rest of his life. He will never forgot this. If Marina’s parents support him, then we all should as well.

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