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Soldier detained in California in fatal Hawaii hit-and-run; victim identified

Two Honolulu police cars in the street investigating an accident. (Nesnad/Wikimedia Commons)
October 31, 2020

The Honolulu Medical Examiner’s Office has identified a 73-year-old man who died Monday in a hit-and-run in Wahiawa as Todd M. White of Haleiwa.

Honolulu police responded to a report of a motor vehicle collision at the intersection of Kamehameha Highway and Wilikina Drive at about 9 :45 a.m.

The police department’s Traffic Division initially investigated the case. Upon further investigation, the case was transferred to the Criminal Investigation Division’s Homicide Detail.

Lt. Deena Thoemmes of the Homicide Detail said a 73-year-old man later identified as White and the suspect met at the Bank of Hawaii parking lot on California Avenue at about 9 :40 a.m. Monday where White was to sell a piece of jewelry to the suspect.

A dispute occurred between the two men when the suspect fled in a vehicle with White’s jewelry, Thoemmes said.

White allegedly attempted to stop the suspect by jumping on the hood of the vehicle.

Thoemmes said a second vehicle driven by White’s wife followed the suspect’s vehicle and attempted to stop the suspect when a collision occurred.

White fell off the hood and was taken to a hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Thoemmes said the suspect sold the piece of jewelry at a pawn shop and fled the state. Officers of the District 2 Crime Reduction Unit located the suspect’s vehicle in Aiea.

The suspect is described to be an active-duty soldier in the U.S. Army and assigned to the 25th Infantry Division, according to spokeswoman Maj. Tania Donovan.

Military authorities detained the suspect after he was located at an airport in California Monday night.

Donovan said the suspect is in custody. Military authorities are cooperating fully with the Honolulu Police Department regarding the case.

“Our thoughts are with the victim’s loved ones during this difficult time, ” Donovan said.


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