School safety officer being extradited to Washington

The school safety manager of Waimea Canyon School is being extradited to Washington State, where he is charged with an undisclosed felony offense.

Todd Erik Lundquist, 40, of Waimea, appeared Tuesday in Fifth Circuit Court to waive extradition. He is being held on a federal detainer, according to online court records kept by the State of Hawai’i Judiciary.

Waimea Canyon School Vice Principal Gary Kitabayashi was out of the office Thursday and wasn’t available to comment.

“For this position, I check any arrests or convictions, or anything that would be detrimental to the school,” said Rodney Goo, state Department of Education school safety management project coordinator. Goo said the DOE found that Lundquist had no criminal record up to December 2002, his month of hire.

Lundquist had traveled to Honolulu April 30 to attend a school safety manager training seminar from about 6-10 p.m. and was to return to Kaua’i May 1, Goo said. He was booked at the Kaua’i Police Department May 2. Lundquist posted bond on $50,000 bail May 5.

“(The defendant) represented that he would like the extradition process to be expedited and that he be isolated from the general population,” according to online court records.

The next court date for this case was set for June 5, for status of extradition.

“We’re very surprised because so far his work has been exemplary,” Goo said.

Goo said he hasn’t yet been given documentation about the incident, and said that though he had talked to Lundquist via telephone this week, he still didn’t know all the details. He added that until he finds out the facts behind this incident, he won’t know if Lundquist will return to work at the elementary school in Waimea.

There are 33 school safety managers employed in the state since the program was implemented in 2000. Lundquist is the only one at work on Kaua’i, and the DOE may hire a few more next school year for the island. Persons with law enforcement experience are eligible for the position.

There have been several troublesome incidents at Waimea Canyon School in the past few weeks: a man was arrested April 24 for trespassing and harassment; another man arrested for exposing himself to students on April 29; and a burglary May 5 to a classroom, with two men arrested on May 7; and a teen-ager arrested May 5 for drug possession at a bus stop across the street from the school.

Staff Writer Kendyce Manguchei can be reached at mailto:kmanguchei@pulitzer.net or 245-3681 (ext. 252).

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