Man, 38, arrested in Kalaoa child death incident

Published On: Jan 30 2013 10:41:56 AM HST
Updated On: Jan 10 2013 12:49:34 PM HST

Pedro Peter

KALAOA, Hawaii -

A 38-year-old man was arrested Wednesday after a 3-year-old boy died from injuries he received after he fell out of the cab of a pickup truck and then was run over, according to Big Island police.

The incident happened on the shoulder area leading to the driveway of a retail establishment off Route 190 on the 73-4000 block in Kalaoa.

The boy was identified as Joel Peter of a Kailua-Kona address.

Police received a call at 6:41 p.m. from Kona Community Hospital reporting the crash.

The driver of the truck, 38-year-old Pedro Peter, drove the boy to the hospital, where the child was pronounced dead at 6:43 p.m.

The driver's 32-year-old wife and three girls -- ages 4, 4 and 6 --who were in the cab, as well as two male relatives who were in the bed of the truck, were not injured.

The investigation revealed that the boy's sister thought their father had parked the truck.  She opened the rear passenger door, at which time the boy fell out.

The father, not knowing that the boy had fallen out, continued up the driveway and ran over the child.

Traffic Enforcement Unit officers arrested Peter on suspicion of negligent homicide, no operator’s license, no no-fault insurance and four counts of child restraints.

He was also arrested for an outstanding warrant for failure to appear.

Police do not suspect speed, alcohol or drugs to be factors in this crash.

An autopsy has been ordered to determine the exact cause of death.

This is the first traffic fatality this year compared with zero at this time last year.

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