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Newswatch
Star-Bulletin staff and wire

Friday, July 15, 2005





INOUYE AND COLLEAGUES TAKE ON ID THEFT

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ASSOCIATED PRESS
Identity-theft legislation was introduced yesterday on Capitol Hill during a news conference with Hawaii's U.S. Sen. Daniel Inouye, who co-chairs the Commerce Committee; Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Florida, left; and Sen. Gordon Smith, R-Oregon.




Maui man is indicted in fake license scheme

A Maui man has been indicted for issuing Hawaii driver's licenses to others during a two-year period knowing that they were not produced lawfully.

Jerry J. Ponce, who is not an employee of the city and county or state, was charged yesterday in U.S. District Court with one count of conspiracy to commit fraud with connection with identification documents.

According to the indictment, Ponce issued driver's licenses between January 2002 to December 2003 for seven individuals identified in court documents only by their initials.

Beginning in January 2002, Ponce and a person identified only as R.D. met at Ponce's home to discuss the transfer of driver's licenses and learner's permits in exchange for cash.

The offense is punishable by a maximum 15 years' imprisonment.

Lahaina Noon makes shadows vanish today

Lahaina Noon, the local name for the semiannual event when the sun is directly overhead, was to occur at 12:37 p.m. today in Honolulu.

Upright objects cast no shadows during Lahaina Noon.

The phenomenon occurs twice a year in the tropics, says Carolyn Kaichi, Bishop Museum Planetarium manager.

Times and dates vary in different parts of the islands. Check the Bishop Museum Web site, www.bishopmuseum.org, for other times.

HECO plans meetings on wind farm proposal

Hawaiian Electric Co. will hold three community meetings next week about its proposal to build an electricity-generating wind farm mauka of its Kahe Power Plant, between Kapolei and Nanakuli.

The meetings will be from 7 to 9 p.m. on:

» Tuesday at the Marriott Ihilani Resort Ocean Ballroom I, 92-1001 Olani St., Ko Olina.
» Wednesday at Kapolei High School cafeteria, 91-5007 Kapolei Parkway, Kapolei.
» Thursday at Old Nanaikapono Elementary School cafeteria, 69-195 Farrington Highway, Nanakuli.

For more information, contact HECO at 543-7780.





Police, Fire, Courts

Police/Fire

By Star-Bulletin staff

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CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Honolulu Fire Department rescue specialist Jeff Barbieto, left, escorted David Manalo from helicopter Rescue 2 after bringing Manalo and another hiker down after an overnight stay on the Manana Trail in the Pacific Palisades area. Aaron Paoa, the other hiker, said lack of equipment and loss of daylight forced them to spend the night on the mountain.




LEEWARD OAHU

Waipahu woman dies after her car crashes

A 60-year-old Waipahu woman died Wednesday night after her car crashed into a light pole on Makakilo Drive.

Police said the woman was driving north on Makakilo Drive and crossed into the southbound lane.

She continued to travel northbound in the southbound lane for about 200 feet, then struck a light pole on the west shoulder of Makakilo Drive at about 9:30 p.m., police said.

The woman received no visible injuries, but she was unresponsive and not breathing, police said.

She was taken in critical condition to St. Francis Medical Center-West, where she died at 10:06 p.m.

This was Oahu's 47th traffic fatality compared with 35 last year at this time.

WINDWARD OAHU

Hauula handyman spots stolen tools

Police arrested a 45-year-old homeless man yesterday for allegedly detaining stolen property taken from a vehicle taken from a Hauula handyman's home.

Police said the vehicle was taken sometime before 6 a.m. Wednesday. Police found the vehicle burning on Marconi Road at 7:30 a.m.

The handyman saw a man selling tools on the side of the roadway, so he stopped and recognized one of his locksmith tools.

The man reported the matter to police, and the suspect was arrested at about noon yesterday on Kamehameha Highway in Hauula where he sold the tools.

HONOLULU

Woman claims assault in Waikiki hotel room

Police recovered narcotics in the hotel room of a 23-year-old sexual assault suspect Wednesday morning.

The man had allegedly been consuming alcoholic drinks with the victim, 22, in a Waikiki hotel room when the victim lost consciousness and awoke later to find the suspect sexually assaulting her, according to police.

Police searched the suspect’s hotel room and found the narcotics and arrested the suspect for investigation of first-degree sexual assault and drug counts.

City wants to beef up security at City Hall

City officials are meeting to discuss a security upgrade at City Hall after two burglaries there last week.

The first burglary took place between Thursday evening and Friday morning at the office of information and complaints on the third floor. The second burglary took place during the weekend at the office of the city clerk on the ground floor.

In both burglaries, police said, computer equipment was taken. City officials have said the computers did not have any information that could be used to perpetrate identity theft. Today's security meeting will be attended by the Design and Construction Department along with the Managing Director's Office.

NORTH SHORE

Burning car has body inside in Mokuleia

Honolulu police are investigating the discovery of a body found in a burning car early yesterday at Mokuleia Army Beach.

Firefighters responded to the vehicle fire at 2 a.m. and found a Honda Civic engulfed in flames. Upon checking the car after the fire was put out, police discovered the body of a man lying across the front seats.

The case has been classified as an unattended death pending investigation.

NEIGHBOR ISLANDS

State workers head to Maui to fight fire

LAHAINA » Some 20 state workers from the Big Island and Oahu were expected to arrive on Maui today to help in fighting a forest fire on a steep mountainside mauka of Lahaina town.

The fire at about the 1,400-foot level has burned at least 110 acres in a wooded area with eucalyptus and silk oak trees, said state firefighting coordinator Glenn Shishido last night.

Some 30 firefighters, including state and Maui County workers, helped to slow the spread of the blaze but had not contained it by early yesterday evening, authorities said.

Three helicopters filling their buckets at reservoirs made water drops, and bulldozers cut fire breaks. Shishido said workers have been cutting trees.

Fire officials said the terrain was too steep and inaccessible for water tankers.

The fire, first reported at 6:59 p.m. Tuesday, was contained within a 4-acre area by noon Wednesday but flared up with high winds later that day.



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