KAHULUI - Molokai patrol officer Sepulona Faleali'i and the Maui Police Department's Vehicle Homicide Unit were recognized by Mothers Against Drunk Driving for their work in keeping impaired drivers off the road last year.
Faleali'i, a nine-year department veteran, has been assigned to the Molokai Patrol District since May 2004. The Molokai resident led the district with three impaired driving arrests last year. He also conducted several successful narcotics investigations.
Faleali'i is a member of the Hawaii Army National Guard and has been deployed twice to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Police Chief Gary Yabuta (third from left) poses with Mothers Against Drunk Driving award winners (from left) traffic investigator Dukie Racadio, traffic Sgt. Barry Aoki, Wailuku officer Rod Corso, Kihei officer Carl Eguia, Lahaina officer Marvin Tevaga, Molokai officer Sepulona Faleali‘i and traffic investigator Gregg Rowe.
Honored with MADD's unit award for exceptional achievement was the Vehicle Homicide Unit, which investigates fatal and near-fatal traffic collisions.
"Most of these crashes involve impaired drivers," according to the unit's nomination for the award. "Through their intensive training in crash reconstruction and expertise, they have been a highly successful component in prosecuting drivers in these crashes."
Sgt. Barry Aoki supervises the investigative unit, which includes officers Dukie Racadio, Lawrence Becraft, Duke Pua, Dawn Danley and Gregg Rowe.
MADD also recognized patrol officers who made the most arrests of motorists driving under the influence in their districts last year.
Officers receiving awards were Rod Corso, Wailuku, 14 arrests; Jeffrey Platt and Angela Starr, Hana, one arrest each; Marvin Tevaga, Lahaina, 18 arrests; and Carl Eguia, Kihei, 12 arrests.
Maui Toyota partnered with MADD to hold the annual law enforcement awards luncheon May 23 at Cafe O'Lei at The Dunes in Kahului.