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Father of suspect in Keehi Lagoon crash speaks up for son

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 12:44 a.m. HST, Aug 14, 2012

The father of a 20-year-old Australian tourist arrested for a fatal personal watercraft crash at Keehi Lagoon says he fears he will have to return home without his son.

"The maximum penalty is a year in jail, so we're trying to prepare ourselves for the worst and go from there," Alan Dagley told the Courier-Mail newspaper in Australia from his hotel room in Honolulu. "We know they (the victim's family) are hurting and we couldn't imagine being on their side. Tyson was saying to us that he wished it was him."

Alan Dagley’s son Tyson, 20, of Crestmead, south of Brisbane, Australia, remains in custody on $100,000 bail after his arrest last week on a misdemeanor negligent homicide charge. 

Police said Dagley was showing off for his girlfriend and not paying attention when his rented Yamaha Waverunner smashed into the back of another rented personal watercraft ridden by 16-year-old Kristen Fonseca on an Aloha Jet Ski Rentals course in Keehi Lagoon on Aug. 4. Fonseca died after hitting her head on the Yamaha’s handlebars.

Dagley’s girlfriend, Natasha Ryan, was arrested and charged with hindering prosecution for allegedly deleting a video showing the crash and the moments before the crash. She is free on $500 bail.

Alan Dagley said his son, a carpet cleaner, and Ryan had saved for two years to go on what they thought would be a dream vacation.

"He's very scared, he's still not that well with the injuries he got through his neck, head and shoulders. He's a good kid, he hasn't got a bad bone in his body, he wouldn't hurt anyone and that's the honest truth, he's so kind-hearted and accidents happen."

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