LIHU‘E — A Wailua couple who boarded a flight knowingly positive for COVID-19 to Kaua‘i was arrested Sunday.
Wesley Moribe, 41, and Courtney Peterson, 46, were arrested and charged for reckless endangering in the second degree at the Lihu‘e Airport after deplaning a flight from San Francisco on Nov. 29.
The Kaua‘i Police Department said personnel working at the airport checkpoint were alerted that a couple was informed that they had both tested positive for COVID-19.
According to a preliminary report, the couple was instructed by the Quarantine Station at the San Francisco International Airport to isolate and not to board a plane to Hawai‘i. Despite that, Moribe and Peterson boarded a United Airlines flight traveling from San Francisco to Lihu‘e.
Once the couple arrived in Lihu‘e, they were identified and contacted by KPD personnel who escorted them to a designated isolation room for further processing and investigation.
A KPD spokesperson said both Moribe and Peterson were arrested for reckless endangering in the second degree “since they knowingly boarded a flight aware of their positive COVID-19 test results, placing the passengers of the flight in danger of death.”
Moribe and Peterson were transported to Lihu‘e Headquarters where they were booked. Both posted bail which was set at $1,000 dollars each.
Officers who processed the couple were equipped with personal protective gear which includes gloves, a protective gown and a combination mask/safety shield.
The couple traveled with a 4-year-old juvenile who was released into the care of a family member. Child Protective Services was notified, according to KPD.
“The Kaua‘i Police Department, working alongside our county and state partners, remain diligent in protecting the health and safety of our island,” KPD Chief Todd Raybuck said in a statement. “We continue to request visitors and residents alike to follow the Governor’s Emergency Rules and take all necessary precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19.”
Moribe and Peterson have not responded to request for comment.