Police, Fire, Courts

By Star-Bulletin Staff

Sunday, January 19, 2003


A city worker served one of the first customers at the opening of the new Hawaii Kai satellite city hall yesterday at the Hawaii Kai Corporate Plaza, 6600 Kalanianaole Highway, Suite 101. Hours of operation will be 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday. A mobile satellite that had served East Honolulu three days a week for 14 years will be discontinued.


Input on court nominees sought

Chief Justice Ronald Moon is seeking public comment on six judicial nominees to fill a vacancy on the Big Island District Court created by the retirement of Judge Jeffrey Choi.

The Judicial Selection Commission has submitted the following candidates: Harry P. Freitas, Glenn S. Hara, John P. Moran, Alvin K. Nishimura, Matthew S.K. Pyun Jr. and Barbara T. Takase.

Submit written comments about the character and qualifications of the nominees to: Chief Justice Ronald T.Y. Moon, Supreme Court of Hawaii, 417 S. King St., Honolulu 96813, fax number 539-4703.

Comments must be postmarked, faxed or delivered no later than Friday, Jan. 31. All comments will be kept confidential.


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 Managing Editor Frank Bridgewater at 529-4791 or email him at

Police, Fire, Courts


By Star-Bulletin staff

Honolulu Police Department Crimestoppers


Shooting and grenade toss lead to arrest

Big Island police charged a 41-year-old man with attempted murder and other offenses after he allegedly shot and critically wounded a Pahoa man Friday morning.

The suspect, identified as Mark Thomas Taka, of no permanent address, also threw a hand grenade, which failed to explode, at the victim, police said.

Taka was charged yesterday with second-degree attempted murder, first-degree terroristic threatening, three counts of first-degree reckless endangering, use of a firearm in commission of a felony, illegal place to keep firearms and two counts of prohibited ownership of firearms.

The victim, Calvin L. Kobayashi, 44, was taken to the Hilo Medical Center on Friday and later flown to Queen's Medical Center in Honolulu in critical condition.

Kobayashi had been repairing Taka's boat when the two men got into an argument and Taka allegedly got a handgun and shot at Kobayashi several times. As the wounded Kobayashi turned to run away, Taka threw a hand grenade at him and then drove off, police said.

About 10 minutes after the shooting, Taka called police and surrendered without incident.

Police closed Old Government Road as a safety precaution while a U.S. Army Explosive Ordnance Detail from Honolulu disposed of the grenade.

Kauai man in hospital after trucks collide

A 21-year-old Kauai man remained in critical condition at Queen's Medical Center last night, after a pickup truck he was driving was broadsided by a full-size pickup truck Thursday on Kauai, police said.

The man, who is from Kalaheo, pulled out onto Kaumualii Highway from Oyama Road to make a left turn when the other pickup truck heading east on the highway could not stop in time and slammed into the victim's truck, police said.

The man was taken to Wilcox Memorial Hospital by ambulance and later transported by air ambulance to Queen's Medical Center.

A passenger was taken by private vehicle to Wilcox, and was treated and released for minor injuries.

The driver of the full-size truck was not injured.


HFD returns to fight fire on Tantalus ridge

Firefighters returned to Tantalus for several hours yesterday to extinguish what may have been a re-ignition of a Friday brush fire in a remote part of Round Top Drive, firefighter Jon Kim said. The fire department helicopter was used to drop water on the ridgetop fire.

Sailboat gets a tow from Magic Island reef

The Honolulu Fire Department fireboat pulled a 30-foot sailboat off a reef off the tip of Magic Island at about 4 p.m., then transferred the boat, which had a hole in its hull, to the Coast Guard.

The Coast Guard towed the boat, which was not identified last night, to a drydock in Ala Wai harbor by 5:45 p.m., said Petty Officer Justin Acosta.


The Courts

Councilman avoids jail for DUI conviction

WAILUKU >> Maui County Councilman Wayne Nishiki has avoided a jail term for his second drunk driving conviction in five years.

Nishiki, 58, was ordered Friday to pay $996 in fines and fees and perform 240 hours of community service after pleading no contest to driving under the influence of alcohol, following too closely and driving on a bike lane.

He was arrested last Aug. 30 while driving on North Kihei Road.

Deputy Prosecutor Mark Simonds said the prosecutor's office agreed not to seek a jail term in a plea agreement so the state wouldn't have to bring the arresting officer to Maui to testify at a trial, or risk having the charges dismissed if the officer was not available. The former Maui police officer now lives in Oregon.

Nishiki said he hopes to speak to youth about the danger of drinking and driving as part of his community service requirement.

Nishiki also has had his driver's license suspended for one year.

Man gets life sentence for burglaries, assault

WAILUKU >> A life sentence has been handed down for a Maui man convicted of burglarizing the homes of three women and sexually assaulting one of them.

In all, Rodney Lanoza, 33, was convicted of 11 crimes, including attempting to sexually assault the other two women. All three burglaries occurred last May.

During sentencing Friday, Circuit Judge Joel August said he was imposing the life sentence with the possibility of parole to protect the public from Lanoza.

Defense attorney Lee Hayakawa had asked for a 40-year sentence.

Maui County Prosecutor Richard Bissen, who was named the state's first deputy attorney general in December, wanted August to impose the maximum possible sentence of six life terms plus 80 years.

The amount of time Lanoza will have to spend in prison before his is eligible for parole will be determined by the Hawaii Paroling Authority.

E-mail to City Desk


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