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Man killed in wrong-way driver crash on Nimitz is identified

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 12:07 p.m. HST, Mar 19, 2012

The Honolulu Medical Examiner identified an Ewa Beach man killed in a head-on collision on Nimitz Highway involving an apparenlty drunk wrong-way driver early Sunday morning.

Billy Thomas, 28, was a passenger in a white 1995 Geo Metro operated by a 39-year-old Aiea man. The driver, whom police said was intoxicated, drove town-bound in the Ewa-bound lanes on the highway, then made a U-turn at Sand Island Access Road and drove the wrong way in the town-bound lanes.

Police said the Metro struck a white 2002 Toyota 4Runner traveling in the fast lane at about 3 a.m.

Paramedics took Thomas in critical condition to Queen’s Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead. The 39-year-old driver went to Queen’s in serious condition.

The 49-year-old driver of the 4Runner and his passenger, a 40-year-old woman, both of Kapolei, went to Queen’s in serious condition.

The fatality is the 16th traffic death on Oahu so far this year, compared to 11 at the same time last year.

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Surfer_Dude wrote:
I thought the cops were doing enhanced DUI patrols and checkpoints on St Patricks night. They sure missed this guy.
on March 19,2012 | 10:31AM
olos73 wrote:
They do um the wrong places. If they staged cars along H1, they would've caught plenty.
on March 19,2012 | 03:04PM
soshaljustic wrote:
Drunk at a house party or at a bar? What of making the establishment/party providing alcohol equally liable in these deadly accidents? What of raising the luxury taxes on alcohol in the State? To pay for the medical/legal expenses incurred? Some of these expenses are life time expenses the victims must face, as well as the tax payers burdenhood to support the maimed and disabled victims the drinker leaves behind, and the incarceration and therapy for the drinker. These costs to society are exorbitant. If we can do this to cigarette smokers, we can surely do this to the drinkers of the State and the alcohol industry must be aware of these problems by now!
on March 19,2012 | 11:50AM
livinginhawaii wrote:
Typical. They name the victim and not the criminal...
on March 19,2012 | 11:58AM
allie wrote:
Too many drinking and drugged-out drivers out there. You take your life in your hands when you drive out here.
on March 19,2012 | 12:04PM
sloturle wrote:
cuz where da aloha ba
on March 19,2012 | 01:48PM
Cubsfan wrote:
Same place where the heehaws in LA are.
on March 19,2012 | 06:22PM
Cubsfan wrote:
Do you really believe it's only in Hawaii? If so, you must be living under a rock.
on March 19,2012 | 06:21PM
wyterabit wrote:
The problem: No one seems to care about making the penalty from drunk diving more severe. I've been saying for a long time that there should be a VERY harsh penalty for drunk driving. Here is my suggestion: First Offense for DUI (caught at roadblock or by police on patrol) - Mandatory minimum 6 moths in jail and $5,000 fine, License revoked for 1 year. I say "minimum" because after the 6 months, the fine must also be paid in full or the defendant must remain in jail until the fine is paid. Second Offense - Mandatory minimum 1 year in jail and $10,000 fine. Same deal. After the year, if the fine is not paid, the defendant remains incarcerated until the fine is paid. Third Offense (3 strikes and you're out) - Mandatory minimum 20 years and $100,000 fine. For each subsequent offence, the penalties for time and fines are doubled. Anytime the individual is involved in a traffic accident that ends with a fatality, the penalty is automatic involuntary manslaughter, minimum 25 years. You do this and all the people who drive drunk will either think twice and NOT do it or be in jail. Either way, we will reduce and/or eliminate the drunks on the road.
on March 19,2012 | 12:35PM
sccoutt wrote:
Good idea, except I say 2 strikes and you're out. One chance is enough.
on March 19,2012 | 12:40PM
Bumby wrote:
Why they will not change the laws to be harsher is that the leaders of our society partake in alcoholic beverages and that sales of these liquids are a big industry.
on March 19,2012 | 04:18PM
Oahuan wrote:
His family should sue the State for failure to provide warning of the dangers driving in the wrong direction on the Freeway. SUE!! SUE!!! SUE!!!!!!!!!
on March 19,2012 | 04:38PM
stingray65 wrote:
If the victim or victims, the family of any Politiicans or Judges of the State of Hawaii, then they will impose hard penalty..For now, someone with priors in DUI are still out there doing the same they have been doing since the last time they got arrested. Just like a revolving door.
on March 19,2012 | 04:48PM
ejkorvette wrote:
Most Deep and Sincere Prayers to the victims, I am sorry you or anyone has to experience this. Such a Shameful and Disgraceful Act, not to mention Fatal. Someone on this Comment page wrote that if a Hawaii Politician or family member of, were killed, a Stiff and Harsh penalty would be issued. But since that is not the case, then This prior DUI offender will most likely be driving again before the year is out. My feelings have not changed regarding Honolulu Citizens, we choose to bicker and complain in the safe haven of our House, about the INCOMPETENCE of Hawaii and its "So-called" Leadership and Lawmakers, Rather than vigorously PROTEST for the removal of the CLOWNS in Office. The residents of Hawaii Choose not to Protest and Pressure their Elected Officials, for whatever Asinine reason they collectively come up with. I understand the Asian Influence in the State, Reserved behavior, hushed tones of Protest, and always "Being afraid of your Own Shadow" is the Mentality ingrained into the minds of most of these folks. This is what the Politicians "Depend on", Thus making the Honolulu residents Slaves and Prisoners in so-called Paradise. This also is indicative of how far removed the state of Hawaii really is from the other 49 States in America.
on March 19,2012 | 06:16PM
Cubsfan wrote:
Now his family should do it the american way. Sue,the driver. God bless america!
on March 20,2012 | 05:54AM
Publicbraddah wrote:
HawaiiNewsNow also reported the drunk driver had a DUI a few years back. Time to lay down the hammer with some serious jail time. This guy KILLED his passenger and seriously injured two others. Get him off the streets and into jail otherwise he will absolutely do it again and this time it might be you.
on March 20,2012 | 06:53AM
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