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Police: Florida man stole, crashed and abandoned $1M yacht

Donnovan Russell Jester and the $1 million yacht he's accused of trying to steal.
Donnovan Russell Jester and the $1 million yacht he's accused of trying to steal. (Pinellas County Sheriff's Office)

LARGO, Fla. – A Florida man stole a yacht worth nearly $1 million dollars, then quickly abandoned it after accidentally ramming into some pilings, deputies said.

Donnovan Russell Jester, 28, was charged with grand theft of a vessel on Thursday. Pinellas County Sheriff's deputies say Jester stole the 46-foot 2019 Jeanneau Leader with a value of $899,179.

According to an arrest report, he cruised off, but slammed into four channel-marker pilings and quickly abandoned the boat, leaving it to drift into an oyster bed in March. Deputies later found a thumbprint on the cabin door that matched Jester.

The Tampa Bay Times reports he’s being held on $50,000 bail.