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Wednesday, October 18, 2000

Nuuvaelua Tagaolo.

Man charged
in fight before
lei shop crash

Nuuvaelua Tagaolo allegedly
head-butted a driver who
then stabbed him in the chest

Star-Bulletin staff

A Waipahu man was charged yesterday in connection with an apparent case of road rage that led to Friday's crash at a Chinatown lei shop.

Nuuvaelua Tagaolo, 24, was arrested and charged with felony unlawful entry into a motor vehicle after his release from Queen's Medical Center, where he was treated for a stab wound to the chest, police said. He is being held on $50,000 bail.

Tagaolo was driving a van through Chinatown Friday when a 28-year-old Mililani man in another vehicle yelled at him to slow down, police said. Tagaolo followed the motorist for a few blocks, then got out of the van, reached into the Mililani man's vehicle and head-butted him during a stop in traffic near Maunakea and North King streets.

The Mililani man then stabbed Tagaolo in the chest with a knife, police said. The Mililani man turned himself in at police headquarters and was arrested for the stabbing, but has since been released pending further investigation.

Police said he may have stabbed Tagaolo out of self-defense.

The fight led to a crash at Jenny's Flowers and Lei on Beretania Street, when the driver of the van rushing the stabbed Tagaolo to the hospital lost control. The van crashed into the shop and pinned 74-year-old shop owner Janet Roberts upside down against a refrigerated display case and shelves.

Roberts was listed in guarded condition this morning at Queen's.

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