LIHUE — Two years after a car crash left a Kauai woman paralyzed, a man charged with operating a vehicle under the influence of an intoxicant is set to appear in court on Nov. 5, officials from the Office of the Prosecuting Attorney confirmed Tuesday.
Kainalu Gayagas of Kapaa is facing multiple misdemeanor charges — OVUII, second-degree reckless endangering, inattention to driving, reckless driving and unsworn falsification to authorities — in an accident that resulted in the paralysis of Hanamaulu resident Jaycie Kobayashi.
Paramedics responded around 12:25 a.m., Oct. 10, 2013, to a report of a single-vehicle collision on Kuhio Highway in Wailua, near Old Marine Camp Road, that resulted in injuries to a female at the scene, according to police reports.
According to reports, Kobayashi and then boyfriend, Gayagas, celebrated a friend’s birthday that night and later partied at a Kapaa bar. Details between then and the accident, according to reports, are unknown.
The 2010 Kauai High School graduate suffered C3 and C4 spinal injuries that left her paralyzed from the shoulders down, according to reports.
Charges of inattention to driving, reckless driving and OVUII are considered petty misdemeanors under Hawaii state law, while reckless driving and unsworn falsification to authorities are considered misdemeanors.
A misdemeanor is punishable by up to one year in jail and/or a $2,000 fine, said Kauai County Prosecutor Justin Kollar. A petty misdemeanor is punishable up to 30 days in jail and-or a $1,000 fine.
If convicted of OVUII, under Hawaii state law, Gayagas could face a one-year license revocation, two to five days in jail or 72 hours community service, a fine of up to $1,000 and must undergo a 14-hour minimum alcohol-drug treatment program.
Michael Soong, Gayagas’s lawyer, declined to comment.
Jaycie Kobayashi and members of her family could not be immediately reached for comment.