Hilo Fatality 09/02/99

HAWAII COUNTY POLICE DEPARTMENT
TRAFFIC ENFORCEMENT UNIT
SERGEANT SAMUEL V. JELSMA
PHONE: 961-2332
SEPTEMBER 2, 1999
G-04777

MEDIA RELEASE

A 41-year-old Hilo man died Wednesday night (September 1, 1999) after being struck earlier in the day while attempting to cross Kilauea Avenue near Hoku Street.

The victim was identified as Wendal Kepaa.

Responding to a 12:25 p.m. accident call, police officers determined that Kepaa was trying to cross Kilauea Avenue heading west when he was struck by a 1989 Ford Festiva sedan heading north. The victim was taken to the Hilo Medical Center, where he later died as a result of injuries he sustained in the accident. He was pronounced dead at 9:20 p.m.

The driver of the sedan, Elswood Noeau, 20, of a Panaewa address, was not injured in the accident. He was the only occupant of the vehicle.

Traffic Enforcement Unit officers are continuing the investigation into the accident and have ordered an autopsy to determine the cause of death. A standard negligent homicide investigation has been initiated.

Kepaa’s death was the 21st traffic fatality so far this year, compared to 26 at the same time last year.

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