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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Jervis felony charges dropped

By Jim Dooley
Advertiser Staff Writer

Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

Prosecutors said an investigation concluded that former Bishop Estate trustee Gerard Jervis did not intentionally collide with this SUV driven by a group of youths who allegedly had thrown eggs at his Lanikai house.


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Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

Gerard Jervis

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Former Bishop Estate trustee Gerard Jervis reached a plea deal with prosecutors yesterday, admitting to a drunken driving charge and two other charges that were reduced from felonies to petty misdemeanors.

Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Darryl Wong said the more serious charges were based on eyewitness testimony that could not be supported by later forensic analysis by the Honolulu Police Department and private experts hired by Jervis.

Jervis was indicted after an altercation in March near his Lanikai home with a group of youths that he said had thrown eggs at his house.

Driving his BMW sport utility vehicle, Jervis pursued a Ford Explorer containing the young men. The vehicles collided when the Ford failed to make a left turn at an intersection in the residential neighborhood. The Ford then traveled up a guy wire supporting a telephone pole by the side of the road.

Jervis was initially charged with felony criminal property damage and terroristic threatening as well as drunken driving and harassment.

"Originally, when we charged the case it was based on eyewitness testimony," Wong said.

"The collision appeared to be intentional," he said.

"Our forensic analysis by HPD traffic experts concluded that the collision was accidental," Wong said.

"Two defense experts had already concluded the same thing. This is not to excuse what he did. It was still vigilante justice," he said.

Defense lawyer Victor Bakke noted that it is rare for prosecutors to agree to a plea deal that drops all felony charges.

He said Jervis will be sentenced April 17 by Circuit Judge Randal Lee.

Jervis, an attorney, faces a maximum of 30 days in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Eyewitnesses and police described Jervis as angry and verbally abusive after the accident. One witness said he was yelling racial epithets and threatening to "get" the teenagers in the Ford Explorer.

When Jervis was arrested and taken to the Kane'ohe police station for blood-alcohol testing, he was "enraged and irate"and behaved in "a very vulgar, condescending" manner to police, according to grand jury testimony from one officer.

Residents in Lanikai have said that eggs are frequently thrown from cars moving through the neighborhood, striking homes and parked vehicles.

Reach Jim Dooley at jdooley@honoluluadvertiser.com.