Driver gets max in June 7 fatal hitrun

first_imgJennifer Wade and the “love of her life,” Greg Thorkildson, were holding hands, laughing and having a great time when they met Wade’s sister for dinner June 7 at a local restaurant.“After dinner, we headed home, which is the last thing I remember of that night,” Wade said. “The next thing I remember is waking up in the hospital asking for Greg and being told that we were in an accident, and that he did not survive the accident.”Luka I. Tapuaialupe, 30, of Vancouver was sentenced Friday to 5½ years in prison for negligently causing the vehicle crash June 7 that killed Thorkildson, 40, and then fleeing the scene on foot. Wade, 37, was seriously injured in the collision.Tapuaialupe had been drinking and taking marijuana before he sat behind the wheel of his brown 1986 Ford Bronco, which had defective brakes, and drove through Vancouver with a suspended driver’s license.Senior Deputy Prosecutor Kasey Vu said Tapuaialupe knew his brakes were defective; detectives later found an empty brake fluid bottle inside his vehicle. The Bronco was traveling south on Northeast 29th Avenue at about 50 mph in a 20 mph zone when it collided with the driver’s side of Thorkildson’s green Chevrolet Impala, killing Thorkildson instantly, Vu said. Tapuaialupe’s attorney, Sean Downs, argued that the speed limit is 30 to 35 mph at that intersection.last_img read more