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Australian tourist arrested for fatal Keehi Lagoon crash

By Gregg K. Kakesako

LAST UPDATED: 04:16 a.m. HST, Aug 11, 2012

A 20-year-old Australian man was arrested and charged with negligent homicide Thursday night for allegedly causing the death of a 16-year-old California girl in a personal watercraft accident in Keehi Lagoon Sunday.

Honolulu police officers arrested Tyson Dagley, of Brunswick West, near Melbourne, for third-degree negligent homicide, a misdemeanor, at 9:55 p.m. at the Ala Moana Hotel. His bail is set at $100,000, an unusually high amount for the misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to one year in jail and up to a $1,000 fine.

Dagley made a brief initial appearance in District Court Friday morning. He was wearing a neck brace and did not speak. He is scheduled to enter a plea on Tuesday.

In a police report filed in court Friday, investigators said Dagley was the driver of the Yamaha watercraft that hit Kristen Fonseca from behind on Sunday. Her stepfather, Mario Canton, told police the Australian tourist was traveling 35 to 40 mph when his Yamaha Waverunner hit the back of Fonseca’s personal watercraft and flew over it.

Fonseca, from Vacaville, Ca., was taken to Queen’s Medical Center, where she died on Tuesday. The Medical Examiner said Fonseca died of a brain injury.

Fonseca and Dagley had rented their Yamaha Waverunners from Aloha Jet Ski and were on the company’s course in Keehi Lagoon when the accident happened Sunday afternoon.

Canton said he saw Fonseca’s head hit the watercraft's handlebars before she fell in the water.

After the collision, Glenn Cohen, Aloha Jet Ski owner, and Canton went to aid Fonseca.

Dagley also had been injured and was bleeding from the his forehead.

Cohen told police he heard Dagley saying, “I’m sorry. I’m sorry. I can’t believe what I did. I’m so sorry.”

Canton told reporters on Thursday that Dagley approached his daughter’s watercraft “at a very high rate of speed... looking towards the dock so he was not looking in front of him.”

Canton and his wife laid flowers at Keehi Lagoon Wednesday. They planned to return to California Friday with Fonseca’s body.

The accident is also being investigated by the state Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Boating and Ocean Recreation which oversees the watercraft rental business.

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joseph007 wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on August 10,2012 | 07:55AM
allie wrote:
well said
on August 10,2012 | 08:23AM
kainalu wrote:
Agreed. An accident is an accident.
on August 10,2012 | 10:58AM
kahu808 wrote:
Would you accept that if Kristen was your ohana? Operating personal watercraft carries responsibilities.
on August 10,2012 | 12:05PM
pgkemp wrote:
kahu, just a slap on the wrist..........murderers get off like this too............
on August 10,2012 | 12:42PM
kahu808 wrote:
It's a misdemeanor, but a life was lost.
on August 10,2012 | 01:07PM
kainalu wrote:
Absolutely. The step-father's eye-witness account is on tape. The guy was trailing his step-daughter, both going at a high rate of speed, the step-daughter slowed down to acknowledge her family on the dock, and this guy was doing the same thing - but didn't slow down. Again, derived from the step-father's recount on the news. Meanwhile, this kid still looks in shock, will have to deal with taking a life, is facing criminal charges, will certainly be facing civil charges, when only a moment ago he was out on a jet ski ride. He's probably still hoping he wakes up from this nightmare. Yes, if that was my daughter and it went down like that, I wouldn't consider the kid a criminal.
on August 10,2012 | 02:21PM
gobows wrote:
sad sad story
on August 10,2012 | 03:30PM
kailuabred wrote:
Just because its an accident doesn't absolve one from criminal charges if they were negligent...which this guy was.
on August 10,2012 | 05:22PM
primowarrior wrote:
They arrest drivers of automobiles for negligent homicide if they cause an accident that results in death, if there is evidence that the driver was not paying attention or doing something irresponsible while driving. Perhaps the same applies here. But yeah, a good lawyer will probably get him off with a slap on the wrist.
on August 10,2012 | 10:14AM
kahu808 wrote:
If it is simple negligence, it's a misdemeanor. http://www.capitol.hawaii.gov/hrscurrent/Vol14_Ch0701-0853/HRS0707/HRS_0707-0704.htm He may receive a light sentence but the psychological toll may be heavy.
on August 10,2012 | 12:02PM
kahu808 wrote:
I'm sure the young man didn't intend on killing someone that day, but a lot of this case depends on how negligent he was while operating the water craft. Obviously not paying attention. Was this death avoidable? Absolutely. This is akin to driving down the highway and failing to notice that there's a red light ahead and plowing into a stopped car, killing the driver of that vehicle. Pretty callous of you to say life is cheap here.
on August 10,2012 | 11:57AM
jess wrote:
Same thing happens when you accidentally kill someone in a car. I don't agree with it, but it happens.
on August 10,2012 | 12:12PM
copperwire9 wrote:
Shame, Joseph. They arrested him because he was speeding and looking the other way when he plowed into her. Same as if that had happened on a highway. A life was lost through - pay attention to the words - "negligent" "homicide." The death was completely avoidable had he been behaving responsibly. There are two tragedies here, one young person dead and another's life ruined through carelessness. Then there are the callous commentators here. That's another story altogether.
on August 10,2012 | 03:14PM
cojef wrote:
Sad, the victim and the arrested, so young with their lives just starting to bloom.
on August 10,2012 | 08:44AM
dontbelieveinmyths wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on August 10,2012 | 08:44AM
GorillaSmith wrote:
Mind-numbing logic. If I may be so bold as to hazard a guess, are you an Obama voter?
on August 10,2012 | 08:49AM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
Yes gorilla, we all vote for our native son!
on August 10,2012 | 09:02AM
Graham wrote:
Not me.
on August 10,2012 | 09:13AM
walaau808 wrote:
Yup, if you didn't vote Obama you obviously elected GW...and look where that fiasco took us! Imagine how much WORSE things would've been if Cain was president.
on August 10,2012 | 12:49PM
hawaiikone wrote:
or me
on August 10,2012 | 10:32AM
hwpeb wrote:
me neither
on August 10,2012 | 10:43AM
808zone wrote:
not me too
on August 10,2012 | 11:41AM
kainalu wrote:
Guys are in the minority, then. And myths "logic" is spot on - people flee from accidents for this very reason - the ensuing lynch-mob. Otherwise, Obama enjoyed his largest margin of victory here in Hawaii - end of story.
on August 10,2012 | 11:45AM
Bdpapa wrote:
Me too!
on August 10,2012 | 12:45PM
luvshawaii wrote:
He's a native son only when it's convenient for him. Otherwise he says he's from Chicago.
on August 10,2012 | 11:41AM
Mana07 wrote:
Not me. But it is hilarious that you would call him "our native son"...define native
on August 10,2012 | 12:20PM
aomohoa wrote:
Do all you idiots have to make everything about politics! A young girl has died and a young man's life will never be the same. stop acting like children.
on August 10,2012 | 01:30PM
Kalaheo1 wrote:
Thank you.
on August 10,2012 | 02:39PM
Cubsfan wrote:
Don't give children a bad name.
on August 10,2012 | 09:20PM
8082062424 wrote:
Nope not this time. live and learn
on August 10,2012 | 12:31PM
Dragonman wrote:
Yes there is no such thing as an accident, only bad decisions reguarding behavioral choices that lead to people getting hurt or worse that we as a society label an accident.
on August 10,2012 | 09:08AM
kahu808 wrote:
You're right. If you ask the question if the collision was unavoidable then yes, it would be an "accident".
on August 10,2012 | 12:08PM
waikane_honolulu wrote:
Absoloutely correct. Negligence led to a death.
on August 10,2012 | 04:13PM
allie wrote:
he voted for Romney
on August 10,2012 | 10:16AM
kailuabred wrote:
Right, let's let everybody who have accidents off the hook. Who believes in consequences anyway? Are you lolo??
on August 10,2012 | 05:24PM
Mahalo wrote:
Two families lives are ruined on a Hawaiian Vacation. These people were tourist doing normal tourist things. The tour operator should be the one arrested. First of all, yes they may or may not have given instructions about speed that has not be proven. But lets say yes they did, when the young man began to speed, THEY, the tour operator had an obiligation to jump on a jet ski caught the guy and remind him of the speeds or terminate his time on the jet ski.. but no it appears they were irresponsible tour operators got their money and let everything go amock and now two young people full of life and their families are ruined.
on August 10,2012 | 09:04AM
Poipounder808 wrote:
Mahalo...you have absolutely no facts about this case other then what is being reported by the Star Advertiser. You make several assumptions then come to your conclusion that the Jet Ski business is liable. How about waiting for the professional investigators do their job and let the facts come out in a court of law. Oh wait, I get it, Monday quarterbacking is a lot more fun.
on August 10,2012 | 09:30AM
Mahalo wrote:
Poipounder so your facts are that this young boy intentionally ramed the girl and wanted to kill her?
on August 10,2012 | 09:37AM
TigerEye wrote:
Yes, and while we're at it, all of those car rental agencies need to install cameras and ignitionion lock breathalizers in their fleet vehicles or face the consequences of your brand of justice when innocent pedestrians are killed by drunk or careless renters. And, by the way, I don't believe you can make the argument that "normal tourist things" involve activities determined to be homicides.
on August 10,2012 | 10:05AM
Poipounder808 wrote:
Apparently reading comprehension is not one of your attributes. My point is no one really has any "facts", just what is being reported in the media. At this point I am not assessing blame to anyone because I do not know what training was involved by the jet ski company if any, what exactly happened just prior to the collision, what if any toxicology test results are of both the suspect and victim or any other mechanical problems that may have occurred that may have contributed to this accident resulting in a death. I have also not seeing any reports of what witnesses saw leading up to the accident. If you need a further explanation of what I am saying, you will not get it.
on August 10,2012 | 12:40PM
Cubsfan wrote:
It all depends what was written in the jet ski contract. Like when you purchase a mlb ticket and get hit by a baseball and get injured, they are not responsible for your injuries.
on August 10,2012 | 09:29PM
kailuabred wrote:
It's called negligence. Are you really that stupid???
on August 10,2012 | 05:27PM
sluggah wrote:
Spoken like a true ambulance chaser. The kid messed up, he admitted it. But since he doesn't have a pot to p in, go after the business. That's the American way, sadly.
on August 10,2012 | 10:16AM
kahu808 wrote:
I think we can answer this by asking if the collision would have occurred had Tyson been paying attention? Perhaps more regulation is required but I think most of the tourist who ride jet skis do so because they are thrillcraft. Going around in slow circles probably wouldn't be their idea of fun. If anything comes out of this tragedy, I hope they make this activity safer.
on August 10,2012 | 12:14PM
kailuabred wrote:
You are truely lolo
on August 10,2012 | 05:26PM
Cubsfan wrote:
So when you're a tourist, you can act crazy and do anything you want?
on August 10,2012 | 09:25PM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
The first step to sue these "small tourist business". Did the tour operators put "restrictors" on the carburetors? Have a medical plan in place? Have safety personnel on skis? Have an indepth safety briefing? Proving speed in the ocean, no skid marks or physical evidence, very hard. Even at 20 mph fatal injuries can occur. Jet ski do not have brakes!
on August 10,2012 | 09:08AM
bobbob wrote:
Yeah, I agree. In hindsight, throttle restrictors likely could have prevented this. Something good to have for novices, still fun for all, but nowhere near as dangerous.
on August 10,2012 | 09:41AM
kahu808 wrote:
Don't know what their course is, but perhaps they need a separate course for groms.
on August 10,2012 | 12:19PM
CriticalReader wrote:
Was the guy under the influence of alcohol or drugs?
on August 10,2012 | 09:19AM
kahu808 wrote:
You need to ask if he was tested. Being that he was charged for Neg Hom III, it indicates that he tested negative, or wasn't tested and was only charged with simple negligence.
on August 10,2012 | 12:18PM
localguy wrote:
You can give someone all the safety briefings in the world but the minute they get behind the controls they make the ultimate decision to follow the rules or discard them, accepting personal responsibilities for their actions. We'll let HPD run their investigation before we jump to conclusions. Meanwhile, Tyson Dagley, of Brunswick West, should be afraid, very afraid if he is found guilty and headed off to prison. Such a waste of young life for both of them.
on August 10,2012 | 09:52AM
serious wrote:
Local, I agree. Look at the car/cycle accidents--the ages!! Those people have never felt pain. They were out for a good time and never thought of the outcome---sad, yes. At least they were not texting!!!
on August 10,2012 | 10:06AM
allie wrote:
on August 10,2012 | 10:17AM
lowtone123 wrote:
An accident is an accident but the police may have found a reason to charge him during the course of the investigation. Was he legally drunk?
on August 10,2012 | 11:42AM
Kalaheo1 wrote:
There has been NOTHING to even suggest it.
on August 10,2012 | 02:41PM
nuuanusam wrote:
It was an accident, I don't think Dagley will go to jail. Nevertheless, the guilt of taking a young life, even though it is not intentional, will haunt him for the rest of his life.
on August 10,2012 | 11:45AM
mynah wrote:
on August 10,2012 | 11:50AM
waikane_honolulu wrote:
Yes an accident is an accident but when accidental negligence causes a death this should warrant negligent homocide. By the very dieifition of negligent homocide, this case fits in every issue. He was negligent, cause an accident which resulted in a death. why not be charged?
on August 10,2012 | 12:02PM
pakeheat wrote:
Would there be a civil lawsuit filed from the girl's family?
on August 10,2012 | 12:04PM
hanoz808 wrote:
very sad
on August 10,2012 | 12:10PM
Mana07 wrote:
Seems to me that if this young man is to be held responsible then Aloha Jet Ski should be held responsible as well. Since we live in a cultural that cannot accept that sometimes bad things just happen and must always find someone to blame then......I believe that Aloha Jet Ski was negligent in renting BOTH of these jet skis. Furthermore, I believe that the "Company's Course in Keehi Lagoon" is improperly monitored causing a dangerous jet ski environment..... How in the heck can this young man be a fault and the company isn't? VERY TRAGIC FOR ALL INVOLVED
on August 10,2012 | 12:27PM
kailuabred wrote:
I hope that was sarcasm. If not, you need to go buy a new brain.
on August 10,2012 | 05:30PM
Mana07 wrote:
Partial sarcasm. But I very much appreciate the rude comment...
on August 10,2012 | 10:10PM
8082062424 wrote:
I know as long as your 15 you cant use one.But maybe that not a great idea they can go over 20 miles a hour you do not even need a driver license . They should make the age 18
on August 10,2012 | 12:40PM
nitpikker wrote:
probably no criminal penalty but if he can afford to be on vacation in Hawaii he must have some money.
on August 10,2012 | 12:47PM
onevote wrote:
Clearly it was an accident. What a waste of our resources.
on August 10,2012 | 12:54PM
loquaciousone wrote:
I like to think of it as an incident since it was easily preventable. Young people tend to treat these motorized vehicles as toys and they are not. Age restrictions, mandatory safety instructional classes, protective gear and there are many other ways to mitigate the dangers.
on August 10,2012 | 01:10PM
kailuabred wrote:
Not a waste at all. Someone needs to be held accountable if there was negligence.
on August 10,2012 | 05:31PM
inverse wrote:
Why do you think insurance companies quote such high rates to insure a single, 20 year old male for motorcycle insurance? Because if you run statistics on who most likely will get into serious accidents it is is the young male that tends to be reckless on a motorcycle. I don't think anyone thinks this guy had intent to kill this young girl, however eye witnesses, said he was riding fast, which was probably as fast as the jet ski would go and not even paying attention to where he was going. Sad story but maybe the jet ski owner who rents out skis need to counsel BEFORE renting out skis to visitors that they MUST drive responsibly and possibly have some employee out on the water, watching out and insuring all the renters drive responsibly. Even instructing renters that if they go slow of if they stop they must NOT purposely stop in lanes that are designate to go fast. This sounds like a hassle to both renters and ski boat owners HOWEVER after one death, they MUST take steps to prevent this from happening again.
on August 10,2012 | 01:20PM
aomohoa wrote:
YES, I'm sure he was going to fast, but I also believe it was an accident. Now if they find he was drunk or on drugs that's another story. There is always an element of danger when you get on one of those water craft. It is a horrible loss for that family. We hear this type of thing every week, here in Hawaii. So many beautiful things to see and do but sometimes they are dangerous.
on August 10,2012 | 01:28PM
EwaCWO wrote:
A tragic accident, but why didn't the girl pull out of the riding area before slowing down. You cannot stop a jet ski as quickly as you can a car. What is the speed limit for jet skis and how can you tell how fast you are going? 40 mph is about 60 feet per second, how quickly can you react especially if you are not used to the equipment?
on August 10,2012 | 01:56PM
Kalaheo1 wrote:
Those things are dangerous as heck.

They don't have brake lights and they don't even turn at all once you let up on the throttle. This was a heartbreaking, sad and tragic accident.
on August 10,2012 | 02:43PM
Br_tus wrote:
The ONLY reason this poor kid was arrested is because the Step Dad is . . . . http://www.zoominfo.com/#!search/profile/person?personId=1543765899&targetid=profile
on August 10,2012 | 03:45PM
Mallory wrote:
damn. good find
on August 10,2012 | 05:00PM
kailuabred wrote:
Wrong. He was arrested because he was negligent and killed somebody.
on August 10,2012 | 05:33PM
Changalang wrote:
O triple C is going to love that guy if he can't make bail.
on August 10,2012 | 03:46PM
Changalang wrote:
Meanwhile, Mayor Carlisle vetoed the bill that would have made Kailua Beach safer from vendor related accidents. Go figure.
on August 10,2012 | 04:21PM
kailuabred wrote:
You don't see jet skis very often in Kailua. You must not come out here much
on August 10,2012 | 05:34PM
Changalang wrote:
A lot of unregulated vendors just throwing caution to the wind. It was the best beach on the island until the small business guys took it away from the residents. I have not been out there for almost a year. I wonder how many other tax paying locals are avoiding the beach because of the unsavory business element there? I believe one of them got arrested recently for accosting protestors.
on August 10,2012 | 06:49PM
control wrote:
A serious incident like this was never a question of "if" but of "when". And sadly, that day came all too soon for those involved....there is a sector of the tourism industry that caters to thrill seekers and the like. Just look at all the zip line incidents. Those are just the ones we know about.....If you really want to put your life at risk, go to Cabo San Lucas. There is one small bay with one or more cruise ships, dozens of high-speed jet skis, a couple of parasails, water taxis to secluded beaches and seal rookeries, and oh yeah, divers, sail boats, and a very busy marina Life is cheap there.
on August 10,2012 | 03:50PM
twitter6 wrote:
Very very tragic for all involved.
on August 10,2012 | 03:51PM
RKC808 wrote:
Its not the kids fault. It was an ACCIDENT. It was not malicious. He did not have INTENTIONS to hurt or kill the young woman. Despite that, it's still a very sad situation. The womans family should sue the jetski company for lack of safety instructions and enforcement. But of course that will not bring their loved one back.
on August 10,2012 | 03:58PM
kailuabred wrote:
Just because he didn't do it on purpose doesn't absolve him from the consequences. You people need to look up the definition of negligent
on August 10,2012 | 05:36PM
BH1 wrote:
I don't think for a second you'd be saying that if that was your son, brother or dad who killed the girl. People like you need to realize that although the law maybe black and white, your judgment of people you don't even know not have to be.
on August 11,2012 | 12:17AM
Changalang wrote:
Meanwhile, Mayor Carlisle vetoed the bill that would have made Kailua Beach safer from vendor related accidents. Go figure.
on August 10,2012 | 04:21PM
Mallory wrote:
good find
on August 10,2012 | 05:00PM
BH1 wrote:
This just doesn't seem logical. I wouldn't be surprised if half of the commenters on here calling for the kid to be prosecuted and sentenced have let their kids, family or loved ones go go-kart racing at Castle Park back in the day or at the new Podium raceway? What about people you know who have gone parasailing or skydiving? Zip lining?? To me, if you VOLUNTARILY participate in these activities, where "serious injury or death can occur" or you let your children participate... You really have no one to blame but yourself. For the step dad to want to pursue criminal charges, I think he has to take a step back and realize by letting his daughter participate in such an activity... It could have EASILY been her that killed someone. Then what would he be calling for? Lenience? Unless there was drugs or alcohol involved... In my eyes iit was a tragic accident that occurred in a dangerous activity.
on August 10,2012 | 05:17PM
BH1 wrote:
Driving a car and being negligent is COMPLETELY different than voluntarily signing up for an activity where serious injury or death can occur. You drive on public roadways and people need to be held accountable for their actions. But if you sign up to go on a closed course with motorized vehicles that operate at high speeds, with other drivers who have just as little experience as you do... Well... that's taking your life in your own hands for all intents and purposes. If you don't want to drown... Don't go surfing or rent a kayak. Don't want to die racing a car, do not sign up for a NASCAR experience riding in the passenger seat even with an experienced driver... Common sense. Unfortunately when it is not used best, tragedy can occur. And as MUCH as the Aussie kid is filled with regret, I'm sure the girl's parents are asking themselves "why did we let her do that?"
on August 10,2012 | 05:29PM
BRock wrote:
Speeding??? What is the speed limit on the water. Is it marked. How would a person know. Are there speedometers on the water craft?
on August 10,2012 | 06:00PM
oioman wrote:
This could have happened to anybody. This kid is truly a scapegoat. Put the blame where it belongs; Aloha Jet-Ski and the State of Hawaii!!!
on August 10,2012 | 06:28PM
ISAY wrote:
It is unbelievable how serious premeditated crimes, blatant domestic violence, intentional property damage, etc., just get dismissed and then this kid accidentally kills someone and is having the book possibly thrown at him. Imagine the horror he and his family are experiencing. This guy was not drunk or on drugs. He was in a water craft which does not have the same traffic laws as highways. This is truly a heartbreaker for both families, but this accident does not warrant the kind of punishment he is being threatened with. Perhaps jet skis and ski boats need the same regulations and traffic laws that cars have!! There is always an accident waiting to happen when there is speed involved. Maybe jet ski riders should be mandated to wear helmets, which may have saved this girl''s life. I am so saddened for her family and cannot imagine a loss of this magnitude. Sad, sad, all around, but don't ruin this young man's life this way just because of an accident. This water sport clearly needs more regulation and safety precautions implemented. Sue somebody else but don't blame the guy.
on August 10,2012 | 06:37PM
false wrote:
He was reckless and irresponsible and took a live because of that. I've been on jet skis and I have always cared for those in front of me. Chalking recklessness up to an accident is not an excuse.
on August 10,2012 | 06:45PM
Cubsfan wrote:
Absolutely agree. If I'm going over 100 mph on the freeway and hit someone and they die, I'm pretty sure I'll get arrested.
on August 10,2012 | 09:34PM
BH1 wrote:
As I commented earlier, driving a car on a public road is completely different from this situation. On a public road, individuals are responsible for their negligence. This was a private business, one that I would deem a dangerous activity. If you sign up for an activity that says "serious bodily harm or death" could occur...and you still do it? I dunno man. You don't think her parents are regretting letting her o this activity with basically unskilled people operating other machines?
on August 11,2012 | 12:14AM
loria wrote:
I hope that these people and families will find some peace around this tragedy. I've sailed out of and back into Keehi. There can be lots of traffic at times, especially with the fun of the Jet Ski platforms and rentals, the UH sail class, and the kayak paddlers. It always appears like people are having a good time: Meanwhile, I'm always praying that I won't hit someone. There are also paddlers in the water (as they should be) to which we should all give "right of way." There are kayakers and smalll boater trailing the shore line for diving and fishing purposes. More pono needed.
on August 10,2012 | 11:53PM
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