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Whatever
Happened...

An update on past news

Wednesday, May 3, 2000

Lack of evidence
halts Suzuki case

QUESTION: What ever happened to the Diane Suzuki investigation?

ANSWER: Diane Suzuki, a 19-year-old University of Hawaii student and part-time instructor at Rosalie Woodson Dancing Academy in Aiea, has not been seen since July 6, 1985.

The case is classified as a homicide but has not been actively investigated since November 1993, when then-Honolulu Prosecuting Attorney Keith Kaneshiro convened an investigative grand jury to gather and review evidence.

"We wanted to get statements on record and under oath and called a lot of people, even some who were suspects," Kaneshiro said about the three grand jury sessions. "After evaluating what we had, it wasn't enough.

"We did as much as we could with what we had."

Suzuki's body has never been found.

"The difficulty of not having a body is, you can't determine cause of death. And when you have no cause, it's difficult to determine the means of death," Kaneshiro said.

Shortly after she disappeared, a photographer acquaintance of Suzuki was brought in for questioning and reportedly failed a polygraph test. The man's family retained an attorney and he was released without charges.

Since 1985, police have searched a marsh behind the man's home and found evidence of blood at the dance studio through the use of Luminol. But there is no record of Suzuki's blood type to make a comparison.

Homicide investigators first submitted the case to Kaneshiro's office for prosecution in 1991 and did several follow-up investigations.

The suspect and members of his family were subpoenaed to testify at the investigative grand jury sessions seven years ago. The man was represented then by attorney Keith Shigetomi.

On July 6, 1997, the Suzuki family held a private service at Aiea Taiheiji Soto Mission to officially say goodbye to Diane.

In December 1998, Yuri Suzuki died without knowing the truth about her daughter's disappearance.



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