Motorcycle police officer injured on H-1
A motorcycle police officer was injured yesterday afternoon in a single-vehicle accident on the H-1 freeway near the Middle Street-Dillingham Boulevard offramp.
The solo bike officer was taken to the Queen's Medical Center in serious but stable condition, and his condition improved last night, police said.
Witnesses said the officer was heading east on H-1 just past the Middle Street offramp with his flashing blue lights on, according to police. A white truck apparently cut in front of the officer and caused him to veer onto the right shoulder. He collided with some barriers to avoid the truck, police said.
The officer, who has five years of experience, is assigned to the Traffic Division at the main police station.
The accident occurred shortly before 4 p.m. in the eastbound lanes of the freeway near the offramp, the spokeswoman said. The offramp was closed for more than two hours while police investigated.
State tax refund status available online
Hawaii taxpayers can check the status of their refunds online at www.hawaii.gov/tax by filling in their Social Security number and exact amount of refund requested. The State Department of Taxation also offers an automated telephone system to check refund status, at 587-4242, 800-222-3229 from the neighbor islands.
Shadows disappear today at Lahaina noon
Don't worry if your shadow disappears at 12:27 p.m. today in Honolulu. It's Lahaina noon, one of the two times a year when the sun passes directly overhead, says Carolyn Kaichi, Bishop Planetarium manager. A "shadowless" effect occurs during the phenomenon, which happens only in the tropics -- the middle band of Earth including and between the Tropic of Capricorn and the Tropic of Cancer.
It is only in this region that the sun "goes through the zenith, or the very top of the sky," and vertical objects will not cast a shadow, she said.
Lahaina, meaning "cruel sun" in Hawaiian, "seems appropriate for that few moments when no shade can be found as relief from the noonday sun," Kaichi said.
Check www.bishopmuseum. org/planetarium for local times for Lahaina noon, which vary from island to island.
Grants encourage use of education Web site
The Harold K.L. Castle Foundation
is providing $100,000 in grants for schools and nonprofit organizations that want to use the recently launched Just for the Kids
Web site to improve academic achievements. Grant requirements and application forms are available at www.castlefoundation.org.
» Make-A-Wish Hawaii received $30,000 from Castle Resorts & Hotels and the Boys Bunch. The two groups raised funds via the 20th Annual April Foolish Party. Make-A-Wish grants special wishes for children with life-threatening medical conditions.
» Kawaiaha'o Church was awarded $150,000 over three years from the First Hawaiian Bank Foundation to build a multipurpose center for the business office, social hall and classrooms.
The church also received $1 million from the Office of Hawaiian Affairs to be paid over three years for the construction of the center.
» PBS Hawaii received a $35,000 grant from the McInerny Foundation that will enable the public TV station to continue bringing "Nova's" science programming to public high school classrooms statewide.
» The American Cancer Society was given $8,000 by the Adrienne Wong Toyozaki Fund and $2,000 by the James & Winifred D. Robertson Fund to support quality-of-life programs for women with cancer on the Big Island. The James Haruji and Fumiko Tamura Foundation has donated $5,400 to the society's childhood cancer programs.
» The National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Hawaii Division, received a $1,500 grant from the Alexander & Baldwin Foundation to fund peer support programs in the state.
» Aloha Street quarterly magazine donated $5,000 to the Outdoor Circle through its sales of "The Heart of Hawaii" calendar, produced by the Aloha Street Nature Project, a new-charity conservation program.
» The Office of Hawaiian Affairs provided $50,000 to the Oceanic Institute, a Hawaii Pacific University affiliate, to help revitalize the Heeia Fishpond at Kaneohe Bay. The institute is providing technical career training in modern aquaculture techniques to the community group Paepae O He'eia, and providing moi fingerlings in quarterly batches for the fishpond.
The National Marine Fisheries Service has provided a one-year, $130,000 grant to support the project.
» Nanakuli Elementary School has received a $10,000 grant from the National Education Association to replenish and restock its shelves. The school was one of 20 winners of the D.E.A.R. (Drop Everything and Read) Bookshelf Awards.
» Maui Youth and Family Services received $5,000 from First Hawaiian Bank Foundation to assist in developing a comprehensive technology plan. Such a plan will enable the family agency to better deliver its services and develop its programs.
» The Honolulu Symphony, managed by the Honolulu Symphony Foundation, has been awarded a $4 million appropriation from the state Legislature to obtain matching funds that would expand the endowment to $14 million. Also, an annual grant-in-aid of $150,000 will support nearly 200 youth music education programs during the 2006-2007 season.
Police, Fire, Courts
Big Isle woman seriously hurt after being hit by car
HILO » A 39-year-old Big Island woman is in serious but stable condition at the Queen's Medical Center, recovering from injuries received Thursday night when a 45-year-old man rammed her car with his car in South Hilo, Big Island police said.
Witnesses said the main fatally shot himself in the head after hitting the woman's car, police said.
The case is classified as attempted murder and suicide, they said. Police did not release the names of the man and woman.
Police said the incident was an apparent domestic dispute, but gave no further detail about the relationship of the two.
Both drivers were stopped on the shoulder of Volcano Highway at 6:11 p.m. near Glenwood when the incident happened, witnesses told police. The woman attempted to leave in the Hilo direction when the man rammed her car, they said. The man then got out of his car and shot himself, they said.
Anyone with further information is asked to call police at 961-2377 or 935-3311.
2 brothers accused of fondling girl, 12
Two Maili brothers allegedly fondled a 12-year-old girl who lives in the same household as the men.
The girl reported she awoke at about 1 a.m. yesterday and found the men, ages 37 and 51, touching her inappropriately, police said.
The 37-year-old man is the boyfriend of the girl's mother, police said.
The girl was taken into protective custody and released to Child Welfare Services. The men face possible charges of three counts of third-degree sexual assault.
Arson in Waianae does $20,000 damage
Police are investigating a deliberately set fire at a Waianae house under construction that occurred at 4:16 a.m. yesterday.
Police said the vacant two-story house was near completion when the fire began. The fire investigator found an ignitable liquid was used to start the fire, police said.
Damage was estimated at more than $20,000.
Police opened a first-degree criminal property damage case and are investigating the motive for the blaze.
No one was injured in the fire, which was extinguished by 4:25 a.m.
Seat belt violator charged for car theft
A 36-year-old man was charged yesterday for auto theft in Maili after police stopped him for not wearing his seat belt.
An officer patrolling Maili Beach noticed Alden Almeida not wearing a seat belt and stopped him at 3:25 a.m. Friday. The officer checked and found the car was stolen, according to police.
Almeida was being held in lieu of $20,000 bail.
Kalihi man arrested in girl's sex assault
Police arrested a 31-year-old Kalihi man for allegedly sexually assaulting a girl with whom he was acquainted, police said.
Police said the girl, now 14, was allegedly assaulted in Ewa Beach from September to November 2004 from age 12 to 13.
The man was arrested Thursday for investigation of three counts of first-degree sexual assault and three counts of third-degree sexual assault.
Woman is charged in assault on senior
Authorities charged a 42-year-old Makakilo woman yesterday for allegedly attacking her son's 77-year-old grandmother.
Brandy Von Hamm was charged with first-degree burglary, third-degree assault and first-degree terroristic threatening.
Police said Von Hamm entered the Ewa home of the 77-year-old woman at 11 a.m. on May 12. Von Hamm allegedly went into the bedroom of the woman, who was sleeping, threatened to kill her and struck her several times on her face and body, police said. The 77-year-old suffered a cut to her left eye and was bruised and in pain.
Police arrested Von Hamm on Thursday. Her bail was set at $20,000.