José Fernandez's lawyer suggests foul play possible in fatal boating crash

The lawyer for former Miami Marlins star pitcher José Fernandez believes police have performed a “miscarriage of justice” while investigating the deadly boat crash that killed Fernandez and two other men.

The families of the two other men killed filed negligence and personal injury lawsuits seeking $2 million against Fernandez’s estate. Investigators determined Fernandez had alcohol and cocaine in his system at the time of the crash, and that he had been the one driving, making him responsible.

Fernandez’s lawyer, Ralph Fernandez, is arguing those claims are false. In a 167-page response, Ralph Fernandez — who has no relation to José Fernandez’s family — says investigators were negligent in considering all the scenarios surrounding the crash.

At one point, Fernandez’s lawyer goes after police for not looking into whether foul play could have been involved. A full response to the lawsuit can be read on

“From the inception the case agents decided that José Fernandez was the operator and that his blood alcohol level would support the imaginary charges sufficiently so they intentionally failed to consider any evidence provided to them that José Fernandez and Eduardo Rivera were the victims of foul play, the two of them unwitting recipients of a spiked drink or a mickey of sorts.”

Fernandez’s lawyer also suggests there isn’t enough evidence to rule José Fernandez was the driver on the night of the crash. The document goes into graphic and disturbing detail about the crash, making the argument that Fernandez’s injuries were not consistent with him being the driver, and that there was not strong enough evidence for investigators to make that claim.

Fernandez was killed in a boating accident just days before the end of the 2016 season. The team honored Fernandez’s legacy with a plaque outside the stadium.

José Fernandez died in a boating crash in 2016. (AP Photo)
José Fernandez died in a boating crash in 2016. (AP Photo)

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