gets chilling details
'They banged her,' then kidnapped
and raped her, the Big Isle
jurors are told
Prosecution runs into problemsBy Rod Thompson
Witnesses and transcripts
HILO -- "They banged her!"
Prosecutor Charlene Iboshi used the phrase repeatedly as she told jurors yesterday how Frank Pauline Jr. and two others ran down Big Island newcomer Dana Ireland with their car on Christmas Eve, 1991.
It was the same word another suspect, Ian Schweitzer, allegedly used to explain a dent in his car. "He banged the dog," Alex Franchey told police.
After hitting the 23-year-old woman with their car, they kidnapped and raped her, Iboshi said.
Then Pauline, 18 at the time, hit her with a tire iron, Iboshi said. The reason he gave to police: "To make sure I killed her."
"Bizarre," responded defense attorney Clifford Hunt.
He quoted nationally known forensic pathologist Werner Spitz who told police several times that Ireland's head injury was not caused by a tire iron.
Finally, Spitz wrote to Deputy Police Chief James Correa, "I find it bizarre to say the least that a full blow to Miss Ireland's head using a tire iron as described by Pauline would cause neither skull fracture nor extensive injury to the brain."
Seven and a half years after Ireland's death, someone was finally being tried for the crime yesterday.
Opening statements began the trial of Frank Pauline Jr. on charges of kidnapping, rape, and murder. The two other suspects, Albert Ian and Shawn Schweitzer, are to be tried later.
Hunt charged that the wrong man is being tried. He named another man whom police suspected early in the case and whose teeth marks allegedly match teeth marks found on Ireland's left breast.
Even John Ireland, the victim's father, was pushing authorities to prosecute the man, he said.
DNA tests failed to link the suspect to the case. But later DNA tests also failed to link Pauline or any other suspect, Hunt said.
While Hunt suggested police got the wrong man, Iboshi said Pauline confessed almost immediately to friends.
"The fact (is) that one of the defendant's friends will say that even the next day, Frankie had come -- and this is Christmas Day now -- had come over to his house and said they had banged the girl, hit her, and left her to die," Iboshi said.
It was the first time authorities had revealed that Pauline confessed to anyone before 1994.
That was the year Pauline began telling police about his involvement, Iboshi said, prompted by his conscience.
"Frank Pauline's conscience is starting to work on him. He's told people that he was having dreams of Dana coming to him to help her. When the defendant felt he was not getting what he wanted and felt he might by punished or blamed for something, then he starts backpedaling," Iboshi said.
Pauline denied his confessions.
Hunt told jurors a much more detailed version of events.
Police interviewed Pauline less than three months after the attack. Pauline told them he was with his family all of Christmas Eve, except when he went to a store about 9 p.m., well after the attack on Ireland.
He also told police he had heard an argument between another man and Ian Schweitzer.
Pauline said he overheard the other man tell Schweitzer, "You think you bad because you went run that girl down and f--- her."
Nothing came of it until two years later when Pauline was in jail, telling his stepbrother on the outside, John Gonsalves, that he was getting threats because he was using cocaine in jail but not paying for it.
About that time Gonsalves, Pauline's mother, Pat, a cousin and two others were arrested in a huge case involving several pounds of cocaine.
Gonsalves told police Pauline knew about the Ireland case. In a series of events, Gonsalves escaped the cocaine charges with no jail time.
Pauline met with police, who brought him from Oahu to the Big Island to reconstruct the crime.
"The evidence will show Frank Pauline took them on a wild goose chase," Hunt said. Police pushedPauline for more details. "Oh, come on, you must have done something. You went whack the girl?" Finally an angry Pauline said, "What do you want me to say? OK, I hit her."
Pauline was transferred to the Maui Community CorrectionalCenter where his new attorney learned of his confession. "His attorney on Maui realized he just talked himself into a murder charge and told him to shut up," Hunt said.
Another expert, James Campbell, will testify the marks on Ireland's bicycle don't match ones that would be made by the Volkswagen "bug" the prosecution says was used in the attack, Hunt said.
The vehicle was much more likely a pickup truck or a van with a high bumper, the type police initially suspected was involved, Hunt said. Iboshi said she will have an expert who says the bicycle damage does match a Volkswagen.
Prosecutor has trouble at startBy Rod Thompson
HILO -- The prosecution in the Dana Ireland case ran into problems as soon as the trial began yesterday.
Judge Riki May Amano refused to allow a prosecution investigator to sit in the courtroom throughout the trial to assist prosecutors. It could give the prosecution an unfair advantage, she said.
The judge granted a defense motion to exclude three of the prosecution's expert witnesses. A fourth, nationally known blood expert Henry Lee, did not submit a proper report and may also be excluded, the judge ruled.
Witness Richard Hart said he saw Ireland bicycle past the "Shacks" surfing spot about 4:55 p.m. on Dec. 24, 1991.
That conflicts with testimony expected from Ida Smith, who has said she found the battered Ireland about eight miles away about 5 p.m.
Under prompting from Deputy Prosecutor Charlene Iboshi, Hart said the time might have been earlier.
Iboshi even seemed to warn jurors during her opening statement about holes in her case.
"There may have been some (medical) evidence that was tossed away in the attempt to save her life," Iboshi said.
"There might be testimony about semen evidence that may or may not be related to this case," she said.
She referred to a suspected but unknown fourth attacker, "another person that can't be identified now."
Attorney Brian De Lima, who represented Pauline until he was removed from the case because of a conflict, commented later. "I found it unusual that the prosecution would "spin' their problems during the opening," he said.
Here are some of the witnesses who have testified in the trial of Frank Pauline Jr., who is accused in the 1991 murder of Dana Ireland:
Officer Robert Wagner. The first police officer to arrive at the scene where Dana's wrecked bicycle was found in Vacationland. Wagner testified about the crumpled bicycle and other evidence at the scene.
Richard Hart. A surfer who knew Dana Ireland. He testified that he saw Dana ride her bicycle past a surfing spot known as Shacks on the afternoon of Dec. 24, 1991.
Sandy Ireland. Dana Ireland's sister. Sandy, whom Dana was visiting on the Big Island, was one of the first people to arrive on the scene when Dana's bicycle wreckage was found in Vacationland. She testified about the last time she saw Dana.
Mark Evans. Dana's boyfriend. Dana had ridden her bicycle to his house in Opihikao to invite him to dinner. She was riding back to her parents' rental home in Vacationland when she was struck by a car, abducted, raped and left to die. He testified about the last time he saw Dana.
Others scheduled to testify:Richard Hopkins and Damien (Daniel) Fierro. They found the bicycle wreckage in Vacationland.
Louise Ireland. Dana Ireland's mother. Louise Ireland was in Vacationland when Dana was on the bike ride.
Anna Sherrell. First to call police reporting the Vacationland wreckage. When Sherrell and others saw the wreckage, they began searching for an injured person. They found hair, a watch, a shoe, but no bicyclist.
Lloyd Ishikawa. Police officer working in Puna when Dana was found in Waawaa.
TRANSCRIPT OF ANNA SHERRELL'S CALL
Sgt. Gabriel Malani and Harold Pinnow. They went to the scene of the bicycle wreck in Vacationland. Pinnow later went to the location where Dana was found in Waawaa.
Peter Teijeiro. A witness at the scene where Dana was found.
Hazel Allan. Now known as Hazel Franklin, she was a passing motorist flagged down inWaawaa after Dana was found. With no phone service in the area, she used a cellular phone to call for help.
Johnson Kahili and Anos Arkangel. Ambulance workers who went to the Waawaa scene where Dana was found.
TRANSCRIPT OF HAZEL ALLAN'S CALL
Ritch Trenda. A witness who photographed the scene in Vacationland.
The prosecution has submitted the names of 313 people who may be called as witnesses. The judge struck three of those names on July 21. The defense has submitted the names of 377 witnesses.
Financial hardship getsStar-Bulletin staff
Pauline juror off the case
HILO -- Judge Riki May Amano dismissed a juror from the Frank Pauline case yesterday for reasons of financial hardship.
The action came after a whispered conversation with lawyers and the juror at the judge's bench and no further explanation was given.
A male alternate was then moved into the main jury, leaving one man and two women among remaining alternates for the six- to seven-week trial.
Another juror was also questioned when she reported knowing one of the witnesses. But Amano ruled that that acquaintance was not enough to pose a problem and retained the woman on the jury.
Dana Ireland Archive