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Twin lakes dog park
A Twin Lakes dog park is coming to Oahu.
For those who love dogs but hate leash laws, the time may be coming when they can get on Oahu without being forced to tie up their pets.
At least, if dog lovers have their way.
The Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources and the City and County of Honolulu have formed a steering committee to select a dog park in Twin Lakes, according to a news release Wednesday.
The steering committee’s members include the DLNR, Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell and the DLNR Council. A public hearing is planned for the park’s design on Jan. 26.
The department already owns a property on Ka Uka Street in Waimalu. It is in the planning stage to convert the former tennis center on that property into a dog park. It was announced in September last year.
The group is hoping to start work in May at the current City and County of Honolulu property on Simeon Stratton Road near Waimalu.
It would be the first dog park in Oahu — that’s according to officials. Honolulu City Council Chairman Ernie Martin said he doesn’t know of any in the state.
In other recent dog park news, state Reps. Chris Lee and Cindy Evans said Wednesday they are sponsoring a bill that would set up new laws regarding dogs running loose in cities and parks.
If that’s the case, Oahu’s parks already are not as lax as the island’s residents think. It’s not hard to find dog-free parks, but leash laws are commonplace.
The steering committee announced that a dog park could open as soon as early to mid-2020, but there are still more plans for it.
Lee and Evans said there could be a water feature, a shelter, fencing and other amenities.
It will be up to a committee to make that happen.
“We just want people to be safe and get rid of dog waste — which was not happening before,” Evans said. “And if you look at it, it’s getting worse.”
That said, Hawaii could still use more dog parks.
While there is no law prohibiting leash-free zones, only a handful are in place statewide. In some of them, violators have been cited, but it appears to be rare, according to the Hawaii State Teachers Association.
For example, the Department of Agriculture told the Honolulu Star-Advertiser that it received one complaint from someone that a dog had wandered into the closed mai tais area at Pearl City Beach Park on Sept. 11.
On May 2, Kauai resident Janelle Travieso said a dog pooped in the mai tais area, located behind the pavilion at Ka’eo Point Park in Anahola. The woman contacted the police department.
The incident prompted the county to close the area.
When asked about complaints against the county, Kauai Dog Control Captain David Crockett said he’s “seen some” but that he can’t remember if any have been filed with the department.
He said the county has not increased patrols in the area, which is located between the park’s car-access road and the beach, because there’s not a perceived safety risk.
On its website, Kauai Dog Control describes the area as “a popular access road that leads to a small community park.”
The county has not taken any enforcement actions against dog owners there, Crockett said.
The county could have a similar problem in Koolaupoko Park on the Big Island, according to its website.
In June, an employee at the park told Hawaii News Now that there are “issues” with “loud noises” coming from people walking their dogs there.
Hawaii county councilmember Andy Matusek said he would try to figure out whether the county would need to act in that area.
HONOLULU — The family of six who died when their SUV collided with a vehicle after leaving the Hawaii Ocean View Banyan Court Thursday said their family dog was not aggressive, according to police.
Honolulu Police Department Sgt. Chris Nach, who handles the fatal collision unit, said Kealoha’s SUV passed two other vehicles and ran a red light at the intersection of Nimitz Highway and Kapahulu Avenue before it hit the SUV of her mother, Monaliza Vidal-Hamilton, and her brothers, ages 8, 6 and 4. The two brothers were pronounced dead at the scene. The 8-year-old was taken to the hospital where he died from his injuries, while the 6-year-old was taken to the hospital for observation.
Kealoha’s boyfriend, Narvel Felice Smith, 33, was injured but was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence. He remained in police custody Saturday.
Kealoha, who recently retired, has been suspended with pay. A source told Hawaii News Now that she is “bewildered” and “really scared.”
The family had their first child in December and Kealoha and Felice Smith were to be parents of a second child in February.
A Kealoha family has been killed in a Honolulu car crash.
Police said a family of six was hit by a vehicle driven by an off-duty police sergeant at Nimitz Highway and Kapahulu Avenue.
The mother and the children, ages four, six, and eight, were all pronounced dead at the scene.
The family lived in the neighborhood where the fatal accident happened.
The driver was in a private vehicle and not in an official vehicle, police said.
Police said a second, off-duty police officer witnessed the crash and told other police officers who arrived that the driver was “driving like a grandma.”
The two brothers were pronounced dead at the scene. The eight-year-old was taken to the hospital and later died.
The mother was pronounced dead at the hospital. Her name was not released pending notification of family members.
The couple has two other children.
The family lives in the neighborhood where the accident happened.
Kealoha was suspended from the Honolulu Police Department, where she worked for 23 years.
“I just have no words for my family,” her sister, Tina Faafiti told Hawaii News Now.
“That could have been my family in the car,” her sister Darlene Faafiti said.
The family has asked a judge to force the release of an investigation of the crash and requested that the two off-duty officers face criminal charges.