Friday, February 9, 2001
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Posted on: Friday, February 9, 2001

Rep. Yonamine to resign after second DUI arrest

By Kevin Dayton
and Brandon Masuoka
Advertiser Staff Writers

Following his second arrest for drunken driving early yesterday, state Rep. Nobu Yonamine said he intends to resign from the Legislature because he let his family and supporters down.

State Rep. Nobu Yonamine was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol and failed to pass a field sobriety test on the H-1 Freeway early yesterday morning. He recorded a 0.134 blood-alcohol content at the Pearl City station.

Gregory Yamamoto • The Honolulu Advertiser

Yonamine, 66, D-35th (Pearl City, Pacific Palisades), said he was arrested for driving under the influence in 1984 and paid a fine.

"I think I hadn’t learned my lesson, and now I’ve learned my lesson, and it’s the price that I have to pay," the lawmaker said at the State Capitol. He said he would like to remain in office until the end of this session in May.

"I feel strongly, and this is my conscience speaking, that I do have a higher standard, and I’ve let my family down, and I’ve let my colleagues down, and I’ve let my constituents down, and I feel right now that I would want to submit a resignation," he said.

Police said they stopped Yonamine driving westbound on the H-1 before the H-3 off-ramp yesterday morning, and he failed the field sobriety test. He was brought into the Pearl City station at 12:25 a.m. and arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol.

Police said he recorded a 0.134 blood-alcohol content on his intoxilyzer test at 1:30 a.m., well above the legal limit of .08. Yonamine said his wife posted his $250 bail.

House Speaker Calvin Say, D-18th (Palolo, St. Louis, Kaimuki), said he does not believe that Yonamine should quit.

Yonamine has represented the Pearl City district since 1989, when Gov. John Waihee appointed him to fill out the unfinished term of the late Rep. Roland Kotani. Yonamine also served on the state Board of Education for eight years.

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