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Newswatch


Newswatch
Police, Fire, Courts

By Star-Bulletin Staff

Saturday, November 10, 2001


Program to discuss women's health

A free public program on women's health issues will be held from 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. next Saturday at the Renaissance Ilikai Waikiki.

"Eve in Paradise: Controversies in Women's Health" is sponsored by Straub Foundation, the Hawaii Medical Service Association, and Kapiolani and Queen's medical centers.

Speakers will include specialists on breast, cervical and ovarian cancer, heart disease, menopause, diabetes, osteoporosis, depression and anxiety.

Registration is requested due to limited seating. Call the Straub Foundation, 524-6755.

Confirmed Big Island dengue case retracted

The Centers of Disease Control incorrectly reported that the Big Island had a confirmed case of dengue fever, according to the state Department of Health.

On Nov. 1 the state said the Big Island had a confirmed case in Pahoa. However, a department spokeswoman said yesterday that the CDC had mislabeled the case. Thus, the Big Island has no confirmed cases.

The number of confirmed statewide cases remains 78 because the CDC also mislabeled a positive dengue case on Kauai as negative for the disease, she said. Of the 78 cases, 59 are on Maui, 14 on Oahu and five on Kauai.

State's tax collections increase 6.5% in October

State tax revenues increased 6.5 percent to $279.7 million in October, according figures from the state Department of Taxation.

Despite the effects of Sept. 11, total tax revenues were up $17.4 million from October 2000's $262.5 million. General excise tax collections were up 5.9 percent, to $157.8 million from $148.9 million in the same month last year.

"Although the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks strongly impacted the number of visitors to Hawaii in the second half of September, evidence of this impact did not appear in overall revenues," said Marie Okamura, state director of taxation.

However, tax collections from the hotel industry did feel the effects. The transient accommodations tax fell nearly 10 percent, to $15.6 million from the previous October's $17.3 million.

Mililani sixth-grader becomes mayor for a day

Honolulu's newest mayor had not sat in his chair for more than 10 minutes when he proclaimed his real aspiration was to become governor of the state of Hawaii.

Mililani Middle School sixth-grader Jonathan Enos, the city's honorary "mayor for the day," drew laughs at a news conference yesterday from both reporters and Honolulu Mayor Jeremy Harris, who actually is expected to resign in order to run for governor next year.

Enos, an 11-year-old who serves as spirit chairman for his school's student government, wrote the winning essay for the "Hawaii Leader for a Day" contest, sponsored by the Hawaii Medical Service Association, the Department of Education and others.



Corrections and clarifications

>> Pacific Basin Communications acquired Honolulu and Island Business magazines and laid off eight workers. A chart in Monday's edition of the Star-Bulletin incorrectly reported that Pacific Basin acquired the company's parent and laid off 20.


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

NEIGHBOR ISLANDS

5-day Big Isle sweep nets 4,429 marijuana plants

Big Island police and members of the Statewide Marijuana Eradication Task Force seized 4,429 marijuana plants ranging in height from seedlings to 3 feet during a five-day operation that ended yesterday.

The marijuana sweep is part of the department's "Counter-Cannabis Field Operation" and covered areas of Hamakua, North Hilo, South Hilo, Puna and Kau.

HONOLULU

2 armed men invade, rob Pensacola Street home

Honolulu police are looking for two male suspects who broke into a 68-year-old man's Pensacola Street apartment yesterday morning. Both suspects knocked on the victim's door, then, when he opened the door, entered with handguns and tied up the victim on the floor while they stole his belongings.

Police said that after the suspects took the victim's wallet and cash, they fled the scene. The victim's roommate returned home later and found the victim tied up on the floor.

Police have a similar description for both suspects. Both are said to be about 5 feet 3 inches tall, 180 pounds. They were both wearing dark shirts and dark pants.

Wife claims husband burglarized her home

Police arrested a man yesterday after he dropped off his estranged wife three miles from her Kalihi home, which he then allegedly burglarized.

Police said the suspect and the victim are separated and live apart from each other.

They said that on Tuesday the suspect and the victim were arguing in the suspect's car when the suspect forced his wife out of the vehicle. The suspect then drove to his wife's house without being invited in by her two children, ages 9 and 12, said police.

As the suspect started taking his wife's belongings, the children called their mother to tell her what was happening, police said.

The suspect surrendered to police yesterday on six other warrants and was identified as the suspect in Tuesday's burglary case.

NORTH SHORE

Hunt will continue for woman swept out to sea

The Honolulu Fire Department said it will continue to search for a missing 20-year-old Dartmouth, Mass., woman who was last seen Thursday in North Shore waters.

Police said waves dragged Rachel Cardoza into 10- to 15-foot surf while she and her boyfriend were walking along the shore between Pupukea Beach Park and the surf spot known as "Backdoors."

Fire and Coast Guard helicopters searched by air, but rescue crews could not dive to look for Cardoza yesterday because the waters were too murky. Divers will likely try again today, although surf conditions remain high. Fire officials said if they do not find Cardoza by tonight, they probably will resume the search tomorrow.

Woman flown to hospital after crashing bicycle

A 37-year-old woman suffered head injuries yesterday after an 11:30 a.m. bike accident in Pupukea.

She was conscious when she was flown by helicopter to Queen's Medical Center, said Honolulu fire Capt. Stephen Johnson.

He said she was riding downhill on Pupukea Road, about a quarter-mile in from Kamehameha Highway, when she lost control trying to make a hairpin turn.

She was in guarded condition at Queen's yesterday.

WINDWARD OAHU

Man arrested for attack that left victim in coma

A Waimanalo man was arrested Thursday for a June assault and robbery that left another man in a coma for more than a month, police said.

Police said the June 30 attack occurred at 2:37 a.m. at Swing Video at 1340 Kapiolani Blvd. The victim, a 45-year-old Honolulu man, was in a care home yesterday recovering from injuries sustained in the fight with the 25-year-old suspect.

Police were investigating the case, classified as a first-degree robbery due to the extent of the victim's injuries.

Traffic violation results in escapee's recapture

A woman wanted as an escapee from the Women's Community Correctional Center was recaptured Thursday after being stopped for a traffic violation.

The 31-year-old woman had been missing since Oct. 5 when she failed to return from a work-furlough program.

She was arrested in Honolulu for second-degree escape, a Class C felony. Charges were pending yesterday.

Missing Kaneohe woman was not missing after all

Honolulu police detectives say a Kaneohe woman reported missing since last month contacted police to say she was fine.

Police said Carlene R. Torres had been staying with a friend at an undisclosed location.

Torres' brother, who lives with her in a Kaneohe apartment, said he last saw his sister on Oct. 19.



[THE COURTS]

Judge angered by lawyer's failure to appear in court

A state Circuit Court judge fined attorney Don Wilkerson $500 and ordered a warrant for his arrest for failing to appear before the court yesterday to represent convicted city housing official Michael Kahapea.

Wilkerson was supposed to submit an order resolving restitution claims by the state against Kahapea.

Judge Reynaldo Graulty said yesterday that Wilkerson had engaged in "contemptuous behavior" by knowingly failing to discharge his duties as an officer of the court.

Wilkerson was at home sick yesterday and said he did not know of yesterday's hearing.

He called the sanctions and warrant "outrageous, ridiculous and unfair" in light of previous delays caused by what he called Deputy Prosecutor Randal Lee's failure to adequately prepare for Kahapea's restitution hearings.

"It's a continuous course of conduct by the court and prosecutor to treat Kahapea and me unfairly," Wilkerson said.

He said contempt requires a showing of criminal intent, and he intends to appeal.

Graulty had ruled Sept. 26 in favor of Kahapea, saying he had no ability to pay $3.7 million sought by the state for restitution in the Ewa Villages fraud, but ordered him instead to pay a $365,000 fine.

Graulty had given Wilkerson until Oct. 23 to submit the order and later warned of potential sanctions when he failed to meet the deadline.

Golfer guilty of bribery must write apology letter

A golfer who pleaded guilty to bribing a starter at Ala Wai Golf Course to obtain choice tee times and circumvent the city's automated phone-in system was sentenced to five years' probation, during which she is banned from playing all six municipal courses.

Yong Cha Toyomura, 48, was also ordered yesterday to pay $2,000 in fines and perform 250 hours of community service. She also has seven days to write a letter of apology to other golfers that will be posted at the golf course.

Toyomura pleaded guilty in August under a plea agreement to one count of bribery, punishable by a maximum five years in prison and a $10,000 fine. She was initially charged with six counts of bribery that allegedly took place in March and April last year.

Toyomura did not address the court at yesterday's sentencing. Her attorney, Anthony Yusi, also declined comment.

Starter Janice Kakugawa, who pleaded guilty in August to accepting bribes on several occasions from Toyomura, is expected to be sentenced later this month. Lawrence Helekahi, a clerk at Ala Wai also charged, has yet to be arraigned.





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