The Accident

On the night of August 26, 1994, Delores “Dee Dee” Jackson drowned in the pool at Donald J. Bohana’s house in Ladera Heights, a wealthy area of West Los Angeles just off the east end of the Marina Del Rey Fwy. Donald J. Bohana and Dee Dee Jackson had been dating for about eight weeks.

By 11 p.m. on August 26, the pair had finished a late dinner and had been drinking; Donald, wine, and Dee Dee, rum and coke.

“It was very, very hot, unusually hot in L.A. at the time,” Donald Bohana later told ABC News’ 20/20. “We’d go out, sit by the pool, have a couple of drinks. Delores would sometimes have a cigarette. It’s very romantic.”

Donald Bohana told 20/20 that he and Dee Dee Jackson were in the hot tub. He said she went into the pool and swam back and forth. Then he noticed that she appeared to be in trouble in the 15-foot deep end of the pool.

“I jumped in, put my arms around her and then flipped her out of the pool,” Bohana told 20/20. “At that time, I started doing CPR on her.”

At about 3:30 a.m. Donald Bohana called 911. Paramedics found Dee Dee Jackson nude lying on the concrete by the pool. Donald Bohana was also nude. Delores “Dee Dee” Jackson was dead.

A November 7, 1994 autopsy report found her blood alcohol level (.23) was three times the legal limit for driving. Donald Bohana was also drunk that night. The report noted numerous bruises and scrapes on Dee Dee Jackson’s face and body, which part-time Los Angeles County coroner Dr. David Posey said were the result of “blunt force trauma” and which he labeled “non-accidental.”

After thoroughly investigating the incident, the police and district attorney concluded it was an accidental drowning. Expert pathologist Dr. Michael Baden later said after reviewing the case that he found “no evidence of homicide” and it was a “typical” case of “two people drinking; one accidentally drowned.”

Even though he has maintained his innocence since that awful night in 1994, Donald J. Bohana told 20/20 recently that Dee Dee Jackson’s death still causes him anguish.

“I am responsible and it just pains me very much,” he said. “Had I not been drinking, there’s not a doubt that I would have been able to save her.”