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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Sunday, August 23, 2009

Man arrested in death of cyclist

By John Windrow
Advertiser Staff Writer

Police have arrested a man in an accident that killed a bicyclist in Ka'a'awa on Friday evening and are still searching for the driver of a van that ran down and fatally injured a 68-year-old woman earlier that day in 'Ewa Beach.

Friday's two traffic deaths were followed by a single-vehicle accident early yesterday in Kahuku that left a young woman in critical condition after the pickup truck she was driving crashed on Kamehameha Highway near South Golf Course Road.

Police said the roadway was wet and that speed and alcohol were factors in that single-vehicle accident.

Wayne Vierra Jr., 37, of Ka'a'awa was arrested on suspicion of negligent homicide in the bicyclist's death. Police said a silver pickup truck crossed the center line on Kamehameha Highway and struck the bicycle about a half-mile north of Kualoa Ranch at about 5:40 p.m. Friday. Vierra was arrested nearly two hours later and was released pending further investigation.

The rider of the bicycle, a man believed to be in his 20s, died at the scene, said city Emergency Services spokesman Bryan Cheplic.

In the Friday hit-and-run, police said, the 68-year-old woman was in a crosswalk on Fort Weaver Road near Makule Road when she was struck by the south-bound van about 5:30 a.m. She died at The Queen's Medical Center.

The driver of the vehicle, described by police as an older model, light-colored van, fled. Police said the driver was a man, but gave no further description. Police asked that anyone with information about the incident call HPD's Traffic Division at 529-3499.

The Honolulu medical examiner's office had not released the identity of either victim last night.

The two deaths raised O'ahu's traffic death toll to 39. Last year at this time, 31 people had died on O'ahu's roads.

In the Kahuku accident early yesterday, the woman was driving a Red Dodge pickup truck headed northwest on Kamehameha Highway near South Golf Course Road at 2:50 a.m. when the truck crossed the center line and hit a telephone pole, police said. The truck then veered back to the other side of the road and crashed into a guard rail.

The woman, who was not wearing a seat belt, was thrown from the truck through the passenger-side window.

She was taken in critical condition to a hospital, police said.

There were no other occupants in the truck.

The highway was kept closed in both directions for three hours while police conducted their investigation.