HAWAII COUNTY POLICE DEPARTMENT
TRAFFIC ENFORCEMENT UNIT
SERGEANT SAMUEL JELSMA
APRIL 29, 2003
A 55-year-old Honokaa man was struck by a vehicle and killed early Tuesday (April 29, 2003) as he was walking along Mamalahoa Highway (Route 19) near Tex Drive In and Restaurant in Hamakua.
The victim was identified as Johnelle William Alfonso.
Police said Alfonso was walking on the mauka side of the highway about 2:30 a.m. when he was struck by a Hilo-bound vehicle driven by Douglas Craig Cooper, 47, of Kalopa, Hamakua.
Alfonso was taken to the Hilo Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead at 6:42 a.m.
Police arrested Cooper for driving under the influence of alcohol and two traffic violations.
Police have ordered an autopsy to determine the exact cause of death, and Traffic Enforcement Unit officers are continuing the investigation.
Alfonso’s death was the eighth traffic fatality so far this year on the Big Island, compared to 14 at the same time last year.
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