Change of plea for man accused in a deadly Big Island crash

Change of plea for man accused in a deadly Big Island crash
Christopher Helminger, 21, has changed his plea to no contest. The crash in May killed a respected Hawaii Island firefighter. (Source: HNN)

HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) -The man accused in the crash that killed a Hawaii County fire captain has changed his plea in court.

Christopher Helmlinger initially pleaded not guilty, but last week he pleaded no contest to manslaughter.

As a result, prosecutors will recommend that he be sentenced as a young adult.

He still faces up to 20 years in prison.

He was accused of killing veteran firefighter David Mahon back in May while driving on Mamalahoa Highway.

Police said the 21-year-old was overtaking several vehicles in a no passing zone when he collided with Mahon who was riding his motorcycle to work.

It was Hawaii Island’s 8th traffic fatality of the year.

Helmlinger will be sentenced in January.

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