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Newswatch

Star-Bulletin staff and wire

Tuesday, August 3, 2004


SWEET HAUULA SERENADE

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BARRY MARKOWITZ / SPECIAL TO THE STAR-BULLETIN
Hauula girls sang and played ukulele to a resting monk seal yesterday on the beach adjacent to Kamehameha Highway near the Hauula Fire Station.




Flash flood watch in effect for islands

The National Weather Service issued a flash flood warning for the Big Island last night, while all other islands were under a flash flood watch today as the remnants of Hurricane Darby pass over the state.

Weather forecasters said Kau was hit with up to 3 inches of rain per hour. Other islands saw half an inch to an inch of rainfall per hour in some areas.

The flash flood watch is in effect until 4:30 p.m., while the warning was expected to be lifted late last night.

On Oahu the weather was suspected to be the cause in a power failure affecting 2,200 customers in Kailua, according to a Hawaiian Electric Co. official.

Keolu Hills residents were without electricity for an hour after a lightning arrestor on a pole near the Kailua Heights substation was blown out at 6:54 p.m., said HECO spokesman Bruce Benson.

Benson said there was no witness to a lightning strike, but the porcelain device worked as intended to intercept a lightning strike and protect equipment. Power was restored at 7:57 p.m., he said.

Weather officials predicted that showers and possible thunderstorms would drop off later today.

Swimmer rescued from Big Isle pond

Big Island firefighters took a male swimmer to the hospital Sunday after he was found at the bottom of a pond in a lava tube in South Kohala.

A fire official said the victim and his friends were swimming in the freshwater pond about 11:22 a.m. when the victim failed to resurface after five minutes. Friends searched for him and found him 15 feet below the surface. They administered cardiopulmonary resuscitation and called 911.

Firefighters took the victim to North Hawaii Community Hospital. His condition was not released.




Fighting for a tax break

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GEORGE F. LEE / GLEE@STARBULLETIN.COM
Farmers Myrone Murakami and Grant Hamachi and supporter Carol Philips joined others as they waved signs yesterday in front of Honolulu Hale. They oppose Mayor Jeremy Harris' proposed bill to end the farmers' tax break.




Hawaiian sites safe, telescope report says

Construction of at least four new telescopes at the summit of Mauna Kea on the Big Island would have little effect on native Hawaiian archaeological sites, according to a preliminary environmental impact statement made public yesterday.

No archaeological sites have been discovered in the areas where the telescopes would be built, but some sites have been found in surrounding locations, according to the executive summary of the impact statement. "These are extremely unlikely to be adversely affected by the proposed action" of building the telescopes, the summary states.

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration plans to build at least four and as many as six smaller "Outrigger" telescopes around the two larger Keck I and II telescopes atop the 13,769-foot summit of Mauna Kea.


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[Taking Notice]


>> Saint Francis School and Maemae School, both in Honolulu, are the top private and public schools respectively in the Aloha United Way's Student Aloha program. The program was started 10 years ago as a way to introduce students to community service by coming up with creative ways to raise money. In the 2003-2004 school year, Maemae students raised $2,991 while Saint Francis students raised $1,970.

>> U.S. Sens. Daniel Inouye and Daniel Akaka, along with U.S. Reps. Neil Abercrombie and Ed Case, have announced the selection of 26 high school seniors as recipients of the Robert C. Byrd Honors Scholarship. Under the federally funded national scholarship program, each student will receive up to $1,500 for the first year of college study. The scholarship is renewable for the next three years.

From the 1st Congressional District on Oahu, the winners are:

Tiffany Ching, Justin Furuta, Crystal Shimabukuro, Patrick Sullivan and Christine Wong, of Punahou School; Lindsey Doi and Sarah Kama, of Kamehameha Schools; Derek Fujio, of Mid-Pacific Institute; Brad Kamitaki and David Kobayashi, of Iolani School; Iris Kim, of Roosevelt High School; Tyler Tamashiro, of Mililani High School; and Justin Yoshida, of Moanalua High School.

From the 2nd District:

Jonathan-James Eno, of Baldwin High School in Wailuku; Jonathan Hira, of King Kekaulike High School in Pukalani, Maui; Rachel Hodara, of Seabury Hall in Makawao, Maui; Natalie Kamauoha, of Kahuku High School, Oahu; Melissa Kunz, of Konawaena High School in Captain Cook, Hawaii; Trent Kyono, of Baldwin High; Christina Marzo, of Punahou; Michael Mayeda, of Castle High School in Kaneohe; Stephanie Miyasaki, of Kapaa High on Kauai; Chelsea Nagata, of Maui High in Kahului, Maui; Jordan Otomo, of Baldwin High; Kari Tanimoto, of Pearl City High School; and Trina Ueno, of Lahainaluna High School on Maui.

>> Catholic Charities Hawaii has been accredited by the Council on Accreditation by meeting the highest national standards and delivering best-quality services to the community. The organization's programs serve more than 25,000 people every year.


"Taking Notice" runs on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. . Please send items to City Desk, Star-Bulletin, 500 Ala Moana, Suite 7-210, Honolulu, HI 96813.





Police, Fire, Courts

Police/Fire

By Star-Bulletin staff

HONOLULU

Biker who died is ID'd as Pearl City woman

The city medical examiner yesterday identified the 38-year-old motorcyclist who was killed in a hit-and-run collision Friday as Kapiolani Aea, of Pearl City.

Meanwhile, a 23-year-old Honolulu man who was arrested Saturday under suspicion of first-degree negligent homicide has been released pending investigation.

The collision happened just before 4:15 a.m. in Halawa on the ramp connecting the Koko Head-bound lanes of the H-1 freeway to the Moanalua and H-3 freeways.

Police had said Aea was riding a 2003 Honda Shadow motorcycle with a 28-year-old female passenger. The suspect, who was driving a black 1995 Mazda 626, overtook another vehicle from the left and cut back to the right when it rear-ended the motorcycle, police said.

Police are investigating whether the suspect was speeding before the collision. Aea was pronounced dead at the scene. Her passenger was taken to the Queen's Medical Center in serious condition.

LEEWARD OAHU

Welfare charge joins fugitive's warrant list


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State investigators and Honolulu police have another warrant for the arrest of fugitive Gerald Villanueva, sought on parole revocation and grand jury warrants.

Villanueva is also wanted for questioning in a recent forgery investigation.

In the latest warrant, Villanueva is charged with second-degree theft of $2,724 in welfare fraud.

Villanueva has felony convictions for robbery, theft, escape and forgery, and two weapons offenses. Police said he was last seen in the Pearl City area using automated teller machines at several grocery stores.

Villanueva, 45, is described as 5 feet 10 inches tall, 185 pounds, with a medium build, black hair, brown eyes and a mustache and goatee. He also has tattoos on his left hand and arm.

Anyone with information on his whereabouts is asked to call CrimeStoppers at 955-8300 or by dialing *CRIME on a cellular phone.

Robber takes purse in home intrusion

Police are looking for a man who allegedly robbed a woman of her purse early yesterday as she slept in her Pearl City home.

The woman, 21, was asleep in her home on Aumakua Street when she was awakened by the suspect about 1:45 a.m., police said.

Police said the suspect covered her mouth and nose and held her down on her bed for two minutes before he fled. The victim checked her room and discovered her purse was missing and that the sliding door to her home was open, police said. Police did not say whether the door was forced open or left unlocked.

Police described the suspect as in his 20s, 5 feet 10 inches tall, 180 pounds, with short hair and dark clothing.

Police hold Ewa man in alleged abuse case

Police arrested a 39-year-old Ewa man Sunday after he allegedly hit his wife, 36, several times and threatened her with a knife.

When officers arrived at the suspect's home on Renton Road at 9:45 a.m., he was wielding a knife, police said.

Police arrested the man on suspicion of first-degree terroristic threatening and abuse of a household member.

Man suspected of threatening sister

Police arrested a 20-year-old man Sunday night after he allegedly threatened his sister and her boyfriend with a knife in Waianae.

Police said the incident occurred on Waianae Valley Road about 11:40 p.m. Police said the suspect used a buck knife to threaten his sister, 32, and boyfriend, 31. There were no injuries.

Police arrested the man on suspicion of terroristic threatening.

NEIGHBOR ISLANDS

Brush fire consumes 200 acres on Maui

WAILUKU >> A brush fire burned about 200 acres in Central Maui on the south side of Omaopio Road but caused no monetary damage, said Assistant Fire Chief Mark Paranada.

Paranada said firefighters took more than nine hours to control the fire after receiving the alarm at 1:53 p.m. Sunday.

CENTRAL OAHU

Police seek pig hunter on 3 felony warrants


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Police are looking for a Waianae man who is wanted for three felony warrants.

Ronald Tripp, a pig hunter, was reported missing on July 24 from the Whitmore Village area. An aerial and ground search was conducted by firefighters the following day.

The Honolulu Police Department's Specialized Services Division and investigators from the Department of Land and Natural Resources also assisted firefighters in the search, with no success.

Police said Tripp later contacted family members that he was alive.

It is believed that Tripp avoided search efforts because he has $35,000 in outstanding warrants.

Tripp is wanted for assault, contempt of court and probation revocation for a previous drug conviction.

Police said Tripp might be hiding on the North Shore.

He is described as 5 feet 8 inches tall, 145 pounds, with a slim build, brown hair and brown eyes. Tripp is further described to have a tan complexion and a mustache.

Anyone with information on Tripp's whereabouts can call CrimeStoppers at 955-8300.




Crimestoppers
Honolulu Police Department Crimestoppers

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