Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement (DOCARE) officers arrested this morning a 69-year-old taxi driver for allegedly resisting an order to stop his motor vehicle and reckless driving in Diamond Head Crater on Thursday.
The officers were attempting to stop Eliu Kesi, an Eagle Cabs driver, for allegedly violating the Diamond Head State Monument’s policy prohibiting taxis from soliciting customers inside the crater, but he was allegedly verbally combative and fled at a high rate of speed, said a Department of Land and Natural Resources Division spokesman in a news release.
The officers pursued Kesi, but stopped the chase due to the potential danger to pedestrians and other motorists, particularly in the Kahala Tunnel, DLNR said.
Bail was set at $2,000.
The Division of State Parks personnel said Kesi had been warned several times before.
Kesi was arrested this morning after returning to his cab at the park.
State Parks managers say “numerous independent cab drivers have been engaging in illegal and belligerent activities at Diamond Head for more than a decade.”
Because of this, the state on Nov. 20 discontinued its taxi staging zone to wait for their customers.
Taxi drivers can only drop off and pick up prerequested rides, and there is no solicitation for fares allowed within the monument.
DLNR spokesman Giovonni Parks said that its officers have been first trying to educate taxi drivers before citing them.
DOCARE says taxi drivers have threatened and heckled park staff, badgered and solicited park visitors for fares, have been driving into egress lanes when coming into the park, playing loud music, driving above the 5 mph and 10 mph speed limits, urinating and defecating in the brush.