Hawaii police officer arrested after bicyclist killed

AP News
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Posted: Mar 02, 2015 3:26 PM

KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii (AP) — A 30-year-old police officer on Hawaii's Big Island was arrested and placed on administrative leave after he hit with his car and killed a bicyclist visiting from Michigan

Hawaii Island police officer Jody Buddemeyer was arrested on suspicion of negligent homicide in connection with the death Sunday morning of Jeffrey Sunow, 63, of West Bloomfield, Michigan, according to West Hawaii Today, a newspaper in Kailua-Kona.

Buddemeyer, who was assigned to the South Kohala district, was released after his arrest. There is no telephone listing for him in Hawaii, and he could not be reached for comment Monday.

The bicyclist was found lying face down near a badly damaged bicycle on the shoulder of Waikoloa Road, authorities said.

Sunow died at the scene, first-responders said. He was declared dead at North Kohala Community Hospital, where the body was taken.

Buddemeyer reported the crash shortly before 6:30 a.m. Sunday, according to authorities.

The Office of Professional Standards is conducting an administrative investigation, which is standard after any fatal incident involving an officer, police said.

The eastbound lane of Waikoloa Road was closed for several hours following the collision.

The collision occurred on a notoriously dangerous stretch of the road, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported. A steep incline where the crash occurred follows a bend in the road.

"There's no curb," acting West Hawaii Fire Battalion Chief John Whitman said. "It's very unsafe if you're riding a bicycle."

The rising sun would likely have been in both men's eyes at the time, Whitman said.