Police search for female driver in red car who hit Hawaii Baptist Academy student

Police searching for hit-and-run driver who injured 14-year-old who was walking to school
Published: Oct. 19, 2022 at 5:03 PM HST|Updated: Oct. 20, 2022 at 12:20 AM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Honolulu police are looking for a female driver and a red vehicle involved in a hit-and-run crash that left a Hawaii Baptist Academy student seriously injured this morning.

The car struck a 14-year-old boy during the busy school morning drop-off.

Witnesses say the HBA freshman was crossing at the intersection of Nuuanu Avenue and Willey Street during a walk signal when he was hit by a red four-door car speeding through a red light heading southbound off the Pali Highway. They say the teen was thrown 10 to 15 feet up into the air, and the driver fled the scene.

“I was surprised at how immediately after he landed, he was like, holding his arm arm above his head. Like just to say that he was okay. But it was like a miracle how he was able to survive and not be unconscious,” said Eugene Caruso III, a senior at HBA who was being dropped off along with his sister by their father at 7:12 a.m. when they saw the crash.

The family stopped to help along with other witnesses. They said the red car initially stopped too, but left when people ran to help the injured boy.

“It really bothers me. You got to stop and you got to take responsibility for your actual actions. And for that person to drive off and be on the lam right now. That is tragic,” said parent Eugene Caruso, Jr.

Honolulu Police say the car is possibly a Nissan Versa Note with damage from hitting the teen.

Police say the teen suffered multiple injuries to his head, torso, and arms, and was taken to the hospital in serious condition. He is expected to survive.

Speed, alcohol and drugs have not been ruled out as factors in the crash.

“That’s the most violent thing I’ve ever witnessed. Like you don’t really think that could happen, just like in front of you,” Caruso III said.

In a letter to its community, HBA asked for prayers for the family and said counselors are supporting the victim and his family, as well as all students and staff.

“We said a little prayer for him before the kids went to school and I hope everybody keeps them, you know, and keeps him in their prayers,” Caruso, Jr. said.

HPD is asking the public to help locate the driver.

“If you saw what happened or maybe your neighbor just so happens to have a red vehicle,” you’re asked to call HPD at 808-723-3413.