Emotions run high at court after Tampa Bay boat crash leaves jet skier dead

Pinellas County

PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – Pinellas County prosecutors say nearly two years ago a drunken boater killed Robert Krysztofowicz while he was on a jet ski.

On Thursday, Krysztofowicz’s friends and family flew to Tampa Bay for a pre-trial hearing for Jesse Mayer and to fight for justice.

One of those who flew in was Robert’s daughter Abby Krysztofowicz. She said it’s been almost 2 years since his death and she misses him every day.

“He was a lot of fun to be around, always brightening the room, super outgoing, very caring, he was a good dad,” Krysztofowicz said.

37-year-old Jesse Mayer was arrested in connection with the Labor Day weekend crash in 2019 that killed her dad in the Intracoastal waterways near Madeira beach.

Mayer bonded out hours after being booked and has since been working on a spearfishing boat.

“I just feel frustrated. I understand that he wants to continue living his life…I just want to know if he’s sorry,” Abby said.

In court Thursday, Mayer’s lawyer says the medical examiner will be key.

“I think will become a very critical witness,” said Mayer’s lawyer.

But Krysztofowicz’s best friend Mark Nowak tells 8 On Your Side he isn’t sure why. He said he was riding a jet ski next to Krysztofowicz that dreaded day.

“Boat went flying by and that’s when Rob got ran over,” said Nowak.

Friends since childhood, Nowak said he was one of the dozens at a pre-trial hearing a few weeks ago, and he couldn’t miss this one.

Krysztofowicz daughter Abby said she’s not giving up.

“I want to know what’s going on, be involved as much as I can,” Abby said.

8 On Your Side reached out to Mayer’s lawyer. He said they can’t comment on pending litigation.

Another pre-trial date is set for August, the trial is set for Nov. 1.

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