Driver involved in deadly pedestrian crash in Chinatown says she was on anti-seizure medication

Local News

A woman was released pending further investigation following a deadly pedestrian crash in Chinatown.

It happened just after 3 p.m. Monday on Beretania Street near Maunakea Street.

According to a police lieutenant, a 56-year-old woman driving a white SUV ran the red light, hit three pedestrians in a marked crosswalk, and collided with an oncoming vehicle. She was later identified as Tracy Keliihoomalu.

“She was in the left lane. She was supposed to turn left on Maunakea, but she went straight and hit the pedestrians,” said Francis Wong, the owner of Jenny’s Lei Shop, which is located near the intersection.

Police say a female pedestrian in the crosswalk was pinned between the two vehicles and pronounced dead at the scene.

Emergency Medical Services says two other pedestrians were injured. A woman, described to be in was hospitalized in critical condition, and a 69-year-old man was hospitalized in serious condition.

Honolulu police described the two female pedestrians as 69 and 67-years-old. It is unclear which of those two is the woman who died at the scene.  

Three people in the oncoming vehicle were also taken to the hospital: a 42-year-old woman, a 14-year-old boy, and an 8-year-old girl. All were listed in stable condition.

The impact caused chain-reaction damage to a third vehicle carrying two men, but they were not seriously hurt.

We’re told speed and inattention to driving were factors in the crash.

Keliihoomalu was given a field sobriety test, then arrested for operating a vehicle under the influence of an intoxicant, negligent homicide, and negligent injury.

She told police she had taken anti-seizure medication, but police say testing is needed to confirm the intoxicant.

“In this situation, we’re not too sure medication-wise, but please heed the warning on those medication labels,” said Lt. Andre Peters, Honolulu Police Department. “If it says do not operate any machinery, that does include vehicles, and in this case, it’s a tragic reminder that sometimes you don’t take the medication seriously like the instructions say, and this is the result of it.”

Police initially said three lanes were closed from Maunakea Street to River Street.

Eventually all lanes were shut down so officers could investigate the scene.

The road was reopened at around 5:45 p.m.

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