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Hawaii Officer Arrested After Bicycling Tourist Killed in Patrol Car Accident

March 03, 2015  | 

A 30-year-old police officer on Hawaii's Big Island was arrested and placed on administrative leave after he hit with his car and killed a bicyclist visiting from Michigan

The Hawaii Island officer was arrested on suspicion of negligent homicide in connection with the death Sunday morning of Jeffrey Sunow, 63, of West Bloomfield, Michigan, according to West Hawaii Today, a newspaper in Kailua-Kona.

The collision occurred on a notoriously dangerous stretch of the road, the Associated Press reports. A steep incline where the crash occurred follows a bend in the road.

"There's no curb," acting West Hawaii Fire Battalion Chief John Whitman said. "It's very unsafe if you're riding a bicycle."

The rising sun would likely have been in both men's eyes at the time, Whitman said.

Comments (4)

Displaying 1 - 4 of 4

Hoshi @ 3/3/2015 5:39 PM

Steep incline, dangerous stretch of road, no curb, unsafe for bicycle riding, sun in both their eyes, what makes this the officers fault?

rede2hike @ 3/3/2015 8:04 PM

Come on! Unless the officer was under the influence isn't that going a bit over board?
I've investigated a case just like described, sun in eyes, on a hill crest and our D.A. didn't file any charges & we didn't arrest anybody.
But, guess we will have to wait for all the facts.

kevCopAz @ 3/4/2015 8:57 PM

I agree, unless there is WAY more to the story and there was some actual negligence on the officers part, this is obviously your standard anti cop over reaction by the balless politicians. If this was a civilian or perhaps a local politician, there would never have been an arrest at all, an investigation and then submitted to the DA as it should be. Once again a cop is set to a standard that is non existent for anyone else on earth! This sounds like B.S. Not surprising for the liberal islands of Hawaii, or should I say the "peoples republic of Hawaii". The only place more lib in the USA is then Berkley CA , "maybe".

JE @ 3/5/2015 9:52 PM

The accident occurred at least a half hour before sunrise and "authorities say the bicyclist was found lying face down near a badly damaged bicycle on the shoulder of Waikoloa Road. Responders say Sunow died at the scene". The policeman was not at the scene when first responders arrived. Although there is no paved shoulder and it is dangerous, it would be really hard to miss seeing a bicyclist before sunrise - it was almost a full moon with no other obstacles to hinder line of vision. I drove by shortly after the accident. It occurred on a straight away after a corner - perhaps distracted at just the wrong time coming around the corner ? I don't know the reasons or answers but that the officer left the scene initially is troublesome, which I understood to be the reason for the initial arrest. The bicyclist was an avid bike rider and as such should have been conscious of the inherent dangers of riding at that time on a two way highway, just as the officer should have been aware of the nature of the roadway and frequency of bike riders riding at that time in the area (resorts to top of hill and back).Tragic accident for all!

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