Driver gets misdemeanor for 2012 crash that killed officer

Driver gets misdemeanor for 2012 crash that killed officer

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The driver of a pick-up that struck and killed a Honolulu police officer who was assisting a motorist on the H-1 Freeway was found guilty Thursday of third-degree negligent homicide, a misdemeanor.

Prosecutors had pursued felony manslaughter charges against Scott Ebert, a Mililani resident who was a staff sergeant in the U.S. Air Force. He'll be sentenced in August.

Police Chief Louis Kealoha said he is "extremely disappointed" in the verdict.

"This tragedy is a painful reminder of how dangerous police work is," he said.

The crash happened on Jan. 21, 2012, when Honolulu police officer Garet Davis, 28, had stopped to help a driver with a flat tire on the H-1 Freeway eastbound near the Kaonohi Street overpass.

Davis stopped in the left lane with his blue patrol car lights flashing. That's when his vehicle was rear-ended and burst into flames.

Davis died at the scene, and two others were injured in the crash.

Davis' death prompted Hawaii to pass the "Move Over" law, which requires drivers to slow down to a reasonable speed and move over a lane when passing an emergency vehicle that's stopped and has flashing lights on.

Copyright 2016 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.