2017-07-21 / Front Page

Early probation release denied

Man continues sentence for 2002 hit-and-run boating fatality
BY JEFF LOWE and DEREK MOY
DISPATCH RECORD


Travis Marburger Travis Marburger A district judge denied a request for early probation release of 43-year-old Travis Aaron Marburger, who is serving a probated sentence for a fatal boating incident that happened in 2002.

Marburger pleaded guilty in 2012 for failure to render aid after the hit-and-run on Lake Buchanan that killed Lampasan Justin Roberts and injured two other teenagers.

Marburger was sentenced to 10 years’ probation and 100 days in the Burnet County Jail, and he was ordered to pay a $1,500 fine and restitution of $7,488.58. He also had to relinquish hunting and fishing privileges during his probation.

His attorneys made a motion for early termination of probation, which was denied July 14 by 33rd District Court Judge Allan Garrett.

Retired game warden Jim Lindeman, who is now Precinct 2 Lampasas County commissioner, was one of several people who investigated the original case and who had been contacted to testify at the motion hearing last week.

“It was appalling to me that he’d even ask for a reduction in his probation, simply for the fact that he got such a light sentence in the first place,” Lindeman said. Marburger “hid the boat for eight and a half years behind his house.”

Lindeman said it was frustrating that Marburger’s request reached a motion hearing. He added, however, “The district attorney [Wiley McAfee] did an outstanding job presenting it, and the judge saw right off that it was not going anywhere.”

Garrett ruled immediately, Lindeman said, so Lindeman and Texas Parks and Wildlife Department officials did not have to testify as planned.

Marburger’s defense attorney Chris Gunter said of his client, “Travis has been a model probationer,” who “continues to feel a great deal of remorse about the initial accident, and you know, the hurt that he caused a lot of people.”

Gunter said he knew the request “was a long shot in the first place, so Travis and I were not surprised when the judge denied our request.”

The defense attorney said he suggested to Marburger that they consider waiting a few years and then making another request for early release from probation.

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