PUNA, Hawaii (KHON2) — Police on Hawaii Island have released the names of two individuals who died in separate traffic crashes in Paradise Parks during January, 2021.
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Officials said, 55-year-old Richard Valdez of Granite Bay, California, was traveling east on Maku’u Drive on Saturday, Jan. 9, when he crossed the center line near 2nd Avenue and struck a utility pole. Valdez was ejected from the vehicle as it flipped over and landed upside down.
Police identified the second victim as 32-year-old Ryan Starrett of Kea’au, Hawaii. Officials said, Starrett was operating a motorcycle heading southbound on 24th Avenue on Friday, Jan. 15, when he broadsided a pickup truck after failing to stop at a stop sign at the Maku’u Drive intersection.
Authorities are currently awaiting toxicology results to determine if alcohol or drugs were factors in either of the crashes.
Anyone with information about these crashes can call the East Hawaii Traffic Unit at (808)-961-2339, or Crime Stoppers at (808)-961-8300 if they would like to remain anonymous.