LIHU‘E — A Wailua man, who caused a fatal hit-and-run crash while driving 30 miles per hour over the speed limit, has been sentenced to 10 years in prison.
Jared Denault allegedly drove a Nissan pickup truck across the center line on Kaumuali‘i Highway near Koloa on June 19, 2020 — crashing head-on into a Porsche driven by 60-year-old Lihu‘e resident Gustavo Orellana. Police said he then fled the area.
Orellana, who was born in Ecuador and owned and operated Gus Tile Marble &Granite Shop, died at the scene.
In October 2022, Denault pleaded no contest to charges of negligent homicide in the second degree and accidents involving death or serious bodily injury. Four other charges against him were dropped.
Several months later, Denault moved to withdraw his no-contest plea, with his attorney reporting that he pleaded no contest in hopes of getting a supervised release. The request was denied by the court.
Earlier this month, Judge Randal Valenciano sentenced Denault to 10 years in prison for the accidents involving death charge and five years for the negligent homicide charge. The terms will run at the same time with credit for the time already served. He was also ordered to pay $3,427 in restitution, at a rate of no less than $50 per month.
In addition to the criminal charges, Denault was made to pay $111,526 to Ornella’s insurance provider Progressive in an order filed on April 14. Of that restitution, $100,000 is for personal injuries, $11,026 for property damage to the vehicle, and $500 covers the deductible.
Denault is one of several defendants making their way through the Kaua‘i courts for hit-and-run accidents.
Anahola resident Thomas Castro entered a no-contest plea on Monday in a case related to a fatal four-car crash that occurred on Good Friday in 2022. He faced charges of negligent homicide in the second degree, negligent injury in the first and second degrees, and inattention to driving for his role in the crash, which killed a 59-year-old Princeville resident.
David Michaeledes, 59, is set to be sentenced on May 11 for his role in a Nov. 1, 2021, dump truck crash on Kuhio Highway in the vicinity of the turnoff to Lydgate Park, which killed a visitor from California.
And Sandon Igne, who caused a Christmas Eve 2021 collision that killed two people, will be sentenced on May 5. Igne was drinking at the time of the accident and had a blood-alcohol level of 0.133 percent.
Guthrie Scrimgeour, reporter, can be reached at 808-647-0329 or email@example.com.
Source: The Garden Island