Family of missing teen involved in Makua crash searching for answers

A truck carrying 16 people, mostly teenagers, crashed and then burst into flames. The accident left one person dead and sent four people to the hospital.

It happened Saturday night along Farrington Highway near Makua cave.

Witnesses say there were seven people riding in the front of the truck including the driver, four in the extended cab and five people in the bed of the truck.

They were leaving a house party in Waianae and were on their way to Yokohama Beach Park.

When police and firefighters arrived on scene the truck was engulfed in flames.

Witnesses say 16 people were piled in the truck when the driver lost control.

“The driver started to weave on his own, lost control of the vehicle and it went off the side of the road struck some rocks ejecting some passengers,” Honolulu Police Department Lt. Bobby Towne said.

Police say other passengers were able to climb out on their own. Many of the teens scattered in all directions.

“The vehicle was completely engulfed in flames and upon HFD extinguishing the flames it was discovered a body next to the vehicle completely in flames,” Towne said.

The medical examiner’s office says the body was unidentifiable.

So far, the only person reported unaccounted for in the accident is 16-year-old Zain Lalawai, of Waianae.

His family is begging for anyone with more information to come forward.

“The coroner cannot give us any information on the body they found and this is just horrible for our family. Please we need to know please we just pray everybody is looking for him and will help us,” Lalawai’s grandmother Connie Lalawai said.

The family says they were asked to provide Lalawai’s dental records. And the medical examiners office says it may take up to two weeks before they can positively identify the body.

Friends and family are trying to piece together the different stories circulating about the accident and are still holding onto some hope.

“Too many stories. People said they saw him get out. People said he got out right after the accident. Someone who was actually in the accident said they saw him stuck inside,”said Lalawai’s friend Bronzon Abrazado, who saw him just before he jumped into the truck.

“Someone knows something. Someone was there. People fled the scene. Please someone call us and let us know anything,” pleaded Lalawai’s grandmother.

Only one person has been arrested, who was the driver of the truck 18-year-old Kamealohanakekaiau Wilbur-Delima.

He fled the scene last night but turned himself into police.

He faces negligent homicide and accidental death felony charges.

Police believe speed and alcohol may have been factors in the crash.

“I don’t know what this kid was thinking really. Taking all these kids and he’s all intoxicated and all of them are and he’s trying to drive with so many passengers,” Abrazado said.

Four other passengers in the car were taken to the hospital ages 13 to 16 years old. Emergency Medical Services transported them in serious condition.

Anyone with information is asked to call police.

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