Driver Charged in Fatal Accident 09-08-00

HAWAII COUNTY POLICE DEPARTMENT
TRAFFIC ENFORCEMENT UNIT
SERGEANT SAMUEL V. JELSMA
PHONE: 961-2332
SEPTEMBER 8, 2000
G-40937

MEDIA RELEASE UPDATE

Police have charged the driver of a car that was involved in a traffic fatality Thursday (September 7, 2000) at the corner of Kanoelehua Avenue and Makaala Street in Hilo.

After conferring with prosecutors Friday, officers charged Richard Rosario, 20, with manslaughter, resisting an order to stop a motor vehicle, having no driver’s license and unauthorized control of a propelled vehicle. The other traffic offenses for which the suspect was originally arrested have been dropped.

Rosario is being held in the Hilo police cellblock in lieu of $25,000 bail.

Police are asking that anyone who observed the driving pattern of Rosario’s vehicle to call Officer Christopher Gali of the Traffic Enforcement Unit at 961-2332. Motorists who were overtaken by Rosario’s gray 1989 Nissan Sentra sedan are especially encouraged to call. The observations should start shortly after 3 p.m. on the Keaau-Pahoa Highway (Route 130) in the vicinity of Hawaiian Paradise Park until the crash, which occurred at about 3:18 p.m. at the Hilo intersection.

TEU officers are continuing the investigation into the crash, which resulted in the death of Ellison Sweezey, who became the 27th traffic fatality of the year.

The driver of Sweezey’s car, Paulyn Estioko, 33, Sweezey’s sister, and Megan Salvado, 2, Sweezey’s daughter, were treated and released from the Hilo Medical Center.

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