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Newswatch
Police, Fire, Courts

By Star-Bulletin Staff

Tuesday, April 3, 2001


Ready for sea duty


U.S. NAVY
The submarine USS Greeneville left the Pearl Harbor
Naval Shipyard yesterday, its first sea assignment since
the tragic collision with the Ehime Maru on Feb. 9. The
Navy said the sub will undergo a graduated process of
ensuring crew and ship readiness before returning
to full service.


Lymphoma vaccine researcher to be honored

Dr. Daniel P. Gold, a San Diego researcher who developed a vaccine for certain lymphoma cases, will be honored at a reception from 5:30 to 7:30 tonight at Washington Place.

Gold, with the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center, received the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Translational Research Award for his work. His vaccine is for a form of lymphoma that accounts for about 15 percent of cases.

Hosting the reception to recognize his achievements will be first lady Vicky Cayetano, Lt. Gov. Mazie Hirono, City Council Chairman Jon Yoshimura, Councilman Duke Bainum and former Mayor Frank Fasi.

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, which has a Hawaii affiliate, helps to fund research to cure lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease and myeloma and improve the quality of life for patients and their families.


DANSGECKOS.COM
Leopard geckos like this adult, cute as they are,
are illegal in Hawaii. The state's amnesty program
allows owners to turn them in without facing penalties.



Illegal leopard geckos turned in to city zoo

An unidentified man turned in six illegal "leopard geckos" to the Honolulu Zoo on Saturday. The multi-spotted geckos are native to Iran, India, Afghanistan and Pakistan and are illegal to possess in Hawaii.

All six geckos are females measuring about 6 inches each. Under the state's amnesty program, the owner of the animals is granted immunity from prosecution since they were voluntarily surrendered.

The geckos are being held at the state Agriculture Department's plant quarantine station before going back to the Honolulu Zoo. Arrangements will be made later to ship the geckos to the mainland.


Corrections and clarifications

The Honolulu Star-Bulletin strives to make its news report fair and accurate. If you have a question or comment about news coverage, call Publisher and Editor in Chief John Flanagan at 529-4748 or email him at jflanagan@starbulletin.com.






Police, Fire, Courts

Police/Fire

By Star-Bulletin staff

Honolulu Police Department Crimestoppers

Stores raided for alleged illegal cigarettes

Investigators from the state Attorney General's office arrested 14 people at 13 stores on Oahu for allegedly selling cigarettes that do not have a stamp on the pack indicating the state's $1 per pack cigarette tax had been paid.

The cigarette stamp tax law took effect Jan. 1 of last year. But the state gave retailers until last Saturday to deplete their stock of untaxed cigarettes. The first arrests were made on Sunday and investigators were to continue checking stores today.

Deputy Attorney General Earl Hoke said they will be inspecting all of the more than 1,000 cigarette retailers in the state to make sure the law is being followed.

'Half-naked Burglar' suspect arrested

Honolulu police have arrested and charged a 35-year-old man suspected of being the "Half-naked Hauula Burglar."

Melvin K. Willis has been charged with burglary.

Police said that on March 2 at 3:40 a.m., a woman was asleep in her Puuowaa Street bedroom when she awoke and found a man standing at the edge of her bed, nude from the waist down.

The suspect asked the victim if she smoked and then said, "Sorry," and fled the room after she swore at him.

Police said Willis was already in custody at the Oahu Community Correctional Center on separate charges when he was identified as a suspect in this case.

Chinatown fire snarls traffic but is controlled

A Chinatown fire that caused less than $100 damage still managed to snarl traffic on King Street yesterday. Police closed down King Street from Kekaulike to Maunakea streets and Maunakea Street from King Street to Nimitz Highway while firefighters got a rooftop fire under control.

Fire officials said the fire started at 11:35 a.m. at 101 N. King St., atop the Chinatown Bank of Hawaii building. Fire Capt. Richard Soo said it took 10 minutes for HFD to get the fire under control. Soo said the fire started from several wooden boards stored on the building's roof.

Car flips over on highway after tire blows out

An overturned vehicle at the corner of Kalanianaole Highway and Kapaa Quarry Road closed down the Kailua-bound lane of the highway yesterday for about 45 minutes. Kailua police said the car flipped over after a tire blew, causing the female driver to lose control. The driver suffered minor injuries.

Traffic was rerouted through Auloa Road at Castle Junction. The highway was reopened at 12:49 p.m.

Infantryman killed in car accident now identified

A Schofield Barracks infantryman killed in a one-car accident last weekend has been identified as Spc. Jose E. Lopez, 24, of Davis, Fla. Army officials said Lopez died of multiple internal injuries after a collision north of Kaukonahua Road in Waialua.

The cause of the accident is still under investigation.

Bank robbery suspect found dead over weekend

A man the FBI and CrimeStoppers believed to be the suspect in last week's Bank of Hawaii robbery in Waipahu was found dead over the weekend.

CrimeStoppers officials said yesterday that the body of 44-year-old James Wofford was found in his car on Sunday in the Hau Bush area of Ewa Beach.

Police said Wofford is believed to have committed suicide.

An autopsy in the case is pending.


 | | |

[The Courts]

Former state employee pleads innocent to theft

Germaine K. Kam, a former state Human Services employee, pleaded not guilty yesterday to charges she stole about $112,000 in public assistance benefits by withdrawing money using electronic benefits transfer cards from closed client accounts.

Her parents, Ernest A.F. Kam Jr. and Charlmagne L. Kam, also pleaded not guilty to first-degree theft. They allegedly obtained more than $59,000 in public assistance benefits between February 1997 to November 1999 that they were not entitled to.

Trial for the Kams is set for June 4 before Circuit Judge Marie Milks.

Husband pleads innocent in Kapolei strangulation

A Kapolei man accused of strangling his wife to death last year pleaded not guilty yesterday via video from Oahu Community Correctional Center.

Kenneth Wakisaka, 45, was indicted last week with second-degree murder in the April 2000 death of wife Shirlene, 54. He is being held in lieu of $100,000 bail.

Trial is set for the week of June 4.

Trial date set for officer in North Shore assault

A police officer indicted for sexually assaulting a North Shore woman last year pleaded not guilty yesterday in Circuit Court.

Jerry Gallardo, 33, will go to trial June 4.

Michael Green, attorney for Gallardo, declined comment on the charges, saying they are based on allegations made by the complaining witness.

Gallardo, a police officer at the Wahiawa station, had been to the woman's home before because her son kept running away.

He has been assigned to desk duty pending the resolution of the charges.






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