State 6/21


Man accused of molestation was Kau church leader

NAALEHU — A Big Island man indicted on molestation charges knew the alleged victims through a church in a remote Kau community, a prosecutor said.

Nicholas “Nick” Krivanek, 69, of Ocean View, is accused of molesting two girls under 14. An indictment alleges one victim was molested between 2007 and 2011 and the second victim was allegedly molested between 2009 and 2011.

“The victims did know him because of the church,” Deputy Prosecutor Jeff Burleson told Hawaii Tribune-Herald. “I don’t know if they are members of the church themselves.”

Krivanek was removed as a deacon and youth leader at Ocean View Evangelical Community Church after he confessed to church elders in 2011, said Larry Fisher, who was secretary of the elders at the time.

A condition to remaining a church member was that he not have anything to do with children, Fisher said.

“The pastor informed every church member after he was arrested a couple of Sundays ago,” he said.

He was indicted last month on two counts of continuous sexual assault of a minor under 14. He pleaded not guilty. Trial is set for October. He couldn’t be reached Thursday at Hawaii Community Correctional Center, where he was being held in lieu of $50,000 bail.

Fisher said Krivanek drove children to church activities, such as Sunday school and vacation bible school. The white-bearded Krivanek also played Santa Claus during church functions, Fisher said.

Church Pastor David Johnson couldn’t be reached for comment.

Maui residents sue to change sign-waving law

HONOLULU — Two Maui residents are suing to change a county law prohibiting sign waving on sidewalks and roadways.

The American Civil Liberties Union filed the lawsuit Thursday in federal court in Honolulu on behalf of Chuck Carletta and Mele Stokesberry.

The organization said Maui law prohibits sign-waving within 50 feet of a traffic control signal, 20 feet of a pedestrian crosswalk and six feet of highway pavement.

The ACLU says the county threatened to enforce the ordinance against protesters in January. But it says county police violate the same laws by holding demonstrations about the dangers of drunk and distracted driving.

Senior Staff Attorney Daniel Gluck says it’s illegal for officials to enforce rules against some protesters but not others.

Maui County says it hasn’t yet been served with the lawsuit.

Helicopter drops airplane during salvage operation

WAILUKU, Maui — An airplane that made an emergency landing near a Maui shoreline was lifted by helicopter in a salvage attempt but dropped in the ocean when the aircraft experienced a problem, the Federal Aviation Administration said.

The Piper Cherokee at about 5:38 p.m. Sunday on a flight from Honolulu made an emergency landing 50 yards from Waiehu Beach. The pilot and three others were not injured.

FAA spokesman Ian Gregor said by email Thursday that Pacific Helicopters on Tuesday night attempted a recovery of the Piper Cherokee but ran into a problem and dropped the airplane about a mile offshore.

“The FAA is looking into the circumstances behind the decision to drop the aircraft,” he said.

The decision on what to do with the airplane, he said, is up to the owner, the owner’s insurance company and possibly the Coast Guard.

Witnesses told the Maui News that tradewinds were blowing 20 to 25 mph during the salvage attempt and the damaged airplane appeared to be unwieldy.

The helicopter “was really revving up,” said Jacque Longsworth. It lifted the aircraft, but the “plane was almost too heavy for the helicopter … The plane dropped into the ocean.”

Her husband, Larry Longsworth, was going for his camera when the airplane fell but he saw it afterward looking like “a shark’s tail out there.”

Ivan Bersamin lives on a street that runs parallel to the beach and went outside to watch the salvage attempt.

“It was really windy,” he said. “The airplane started bobbing left and right, and it was affecting the flight of the helicopter … It looked like the helicopter was having a hard time.”

The damaged airplane was twisting as the helicopter flew toward the water.

“The plane was all over the place,” Bersamin said. “We were kind of worried. We thought the helicopter pilot was losing control and was going to crash in the ocean.”

Bersamin said the airplane fell about 100 yards offshore.

“I saw a big splash,” he said. “It hit the water and went down.”

Boy, 8, falls through Honolulu trash chute

HONOLULU — Paramedics took an 8-year-old boy to a hospital in serious condition after he fell down a garbage chute of a Honolulu high-rise building.

Honolulu Emergency Services Department spokeswoman Shayne Enright said the boy apparently went through a trash chute Wednesday night.

Police spokeswoman Michelle Yu says the boy was reported missing and police found him in a dumpster.

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reports he fell 12 floors.

The boy fell at what used to be a public housing complex known as Kuhio Park Terrace.

Recently renovated by a developer it’s now known as the Towers at Kuhio Park. New Jersey-based Michaels Development Co. spokeswoman Laura Zaner says there are still public housing residents living there. It’s also now a mix of affordable and market rate units.