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Bail Reduction Denied For Tourist Charged In Keehi Lagoon Death

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Bail reduction denied for tourist charged in Keehi Lagoon death
POSTED: 11:45 a.m. HST, Aug 14, 2012
LAST UPDATED: 12:07 p.m. HST, Aug 14, 2012

Gregg Kakesako

The 20-year-old Australian tourist accused of negligent homicide in the Keehi Lagoon watercraft crash that killed a California teen remains in custody today after a judge denied his request for a reduction in bail.

At a court appearance this morning, a distraught Tyson Dagley pleaded not guilty and his attorney asked for a trial by jury. District Court Judge Leslie Hayashi scheduled an Aug. 23 hearing in Circuit Court when Dagley’s case will be assigned to a judge. During the proceeding, Dagley broke down crying and hid his face behind his hands.

Dagley is accused of causing the death of Kristen Fonseca of Vacaville, Calif, by negligently operating his rented personal watercraft. Third-degree negligent homicide is a misdemeanor that carries a maximum prison term of one year and up to a $1,000 fine. He was charged under a state law that was changed earlier this year to include watercraft as a vehicle.

Hayashi rejected attorney Walter Rodby’s request to lower Dagley’s $100,000 bail to $2,000 or to release him on his own recognizance.

During the discussion about the bail reduction, the judge asked if Dagley had anything to say. “I am not going anywhere. I am going to stay here as long as you need me,” he said.

But the judge cited the circumstances of the case and said the defense can renew their bail-reduction request with the Circuit Court judge on Aug. 23.

Investigators say that on Aug. 5 Dagley was standing on his rented watercraft before it collided with Fonseca’s watercraft. Police said Dagley, a carpet layer from Brisbane, was showing off for his girlfriend, Natasha Ryan, and not paying attention when his rented Yamaha Waverunner smashed into the back of Fonseca’s Yamaha on an Aloha Jet Ski Rentals course in Keehi Lagoon. Fonseca died the following day from head injuries.

Ryan, 21, was arrested and charged Friday with hindering prosecution for allegedly deleting a video showing the crash and the moments before the crash. She is free on $500 bail.

Ryan, also from Brisbane, is expected to enter a plea at her arraignment in District Court on Sept. 7. There were no restrictions on her bail and she retained her Australian passport. Hindering prosecution is also a misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in prison.

Late yesterday, Honolulu attorney Rick Fried filed a civil suit against Dagley and rental firm Aloha Jet Ski on behalf of Fonseca’s family.

The suit alleges Dagley operated his personal watercraft negligently and recklessly and Aloha Jet Ski employees did nothing to stop him.

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