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Family sues Mao Organic Farms over death at farmers market

By Star-Advertiser staff
POSTED: 01:30 a.m. HST, May 14, 2014


The family of a 27-year-old woman who was fatally injured by a truck at Kapiolani Community College Farmers’ Market has filed a lawsuit against Mao Organic Farms and the truck driver.

The suit was filed Tuesday at Circuit Court on behalf of the estate of Anne Runland and her parents, Sarah van Vegten and Terrence Runland, against Waianae Community Redevelopment Corp., doing business as Mao Organic Farms, and the 23-year-old driver.

At about 6:30 a.m. March 15, Runland was setting up the farmers market area for Greens & Vines raw vegan restaurant when a truck driver for Mao Organic attempted to back a truck into an area used by the Waianae farm company. The vehicle, however, accelerated in reverse and ran over Runland, according to attorney Rick Fried, who is representing the family in the suit.

Runland died from multiple injuries in the accident.

In a March Honolulu Star-Advertiser story, witnesses said the truck was reversing when it suddenly accelerated over a curb and struck Runland. Another vendor ran toward the driver to help control the truck by holding down the vehicle’s brakes while another person disconnected the battery.

Attorney Cary Tanaka, who is representing Mao Organic Farms, could not be reached for comment.