Man indicted in 2019 crash that killed mother of four

  • Nicholas Abarcar. (Hawaii Police Department/Special to West Hawaii Today)

A Kona Grand Jury Tuesday handed down a seven-count indictment in connection with a November crash that took the life of a Kona woman and injured three children.

Nicholas Abarcar was indicted on manslaughter, second-degree negligent homicide, two counts first-degree negligent injury, second-degree negligent injury and operating a vehicle under the influence of an intoxicant, according to Judiciary records.

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On Nov. 10, 2019, Abarcar was operating a black 2017 Jeep Renegade SUV and headed southbound on Queen Kaahumanu Highway when he passed a vehicle in a passing zone and collided head-on with a northbound gray 2015 Honda Pilot SUV about a quarter-mile north of mile marker 90, according to the Hawaii Police Department. The crash was reported at 2:10 p.m. north of the entrance to Ke Kahakai State Park in a 55-mph zone.

The crash killed the Honda’s driver, 35-year-old Cassandra “Cassie” Lynn Ellis, of Kailua-Kona, and sent her three passengers, identified as Taylor Campogan, and her friend, Kawena Haserot, both age 15 at the time of the crash, and one 10-year-old girl, to Kona Community Hospital. Campogan and the 10-year-old were Ellis’s daughters.

Ellis and the girls were headed to Kua Bay for a day at the beach.

The two 15-year-old girls suffered severe injuries in the wreck and were initially transported to Kona Community Hospital, but later flown to The Queen’s Medical Center on Oahu for treatment.

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According to court records, Abarcar pleaded no contest to DUI, having a blood alcohol content over 0.08%, back on May 15, 2018. The now-25-year-old had been arrested and charged with DUI and driving without a license following a traffic stop on Aug. 22, 2017.

He was found guilty and sentenced to pay $312 in fines and fees, $350 in restitution and complete driver’s education and a substance abuse rehabilitation program. His license was also revoked from Sept. 22, 2017, through Sept. 21, 2018.

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