Information sought in Kalihi beating
Edwin Penn was last seen getting into a taxi after going drinking
AN ASSAILANT broke every bone in the face of a drunk and defenseless man, beating him into a coma last week in Kalihi, the victim's daughter says.
Edwin "Lenny" Penn, 63, was unconscious when he was found early last Thursday morning, according to his daughter, Valerie Franklin. She and other relatives traveled from the mainland when they received news about Penn's condition and are asking for the public's help in finding his assailant.
"I'm determined to find out what happened to him," she said yesterday during a news conference. "Any information, any lead, because this is not right."
Franklin said her father is still in "very critical condition" at the Queen's Medical Center and that his condition has not changed since she and her husband arrived in Hawaii from New Orleans on Saturday.
"He's not conscious at all. ... He's not waking up."
Police said Penn was last seen getting into a white four-door taxicab about 2 a.m. last Thursday after drinking at Club E Lounge at 1210 Dillingham Blvd. Twenty minutes later he was found unconscious on the sidewalk near Waiakamilo Road and Colburn Street.
Police are asking for anyone with any information about the case to come forward, including anyone who knows which taxicab company Penn used, and any witnesses who saw how he was injured.
Investigators want to know more about what happened during the 20-minute gap between when he was last seen and when he was found on the side of the road.
"It's a short period of time," said detective Ursla Ortiz-Namoca. "He was not robbed. He did have some personal items on him when he was found. ... It appears he was beaten rather than run over.
"If he was drinking and inebriated, then he's defenseless."
Penn's blood-alcohol level was 0.28 percent -- more than three times the legal limit -- when he was found. Ortiz-Namoca said Penn had earlier caught a ride with a friend to the area and stopped to drink at several bars before leaving in the taxi.
Franklin said her father liked to drink while watching football but would go home afterward. She also said he was a boxer and has a black belt in karate, and believes whoever did this to him attacked him with an object from behind.
"The injuries my dad sustained to his face and skull ... I just believe whatever happened, he didn't have a chance," she said.
Franklin said her father has been living in Hawaii for 13 years, spending half his time here, where he was contracted to do security work for the Navy, and flying to be with her mother in El Paso, Texas. She said this was going to be his last year commuting between two states and that he and her mother were both planning on retiring and moving to Georgia next year, where he would be closer to his five daughters.
"My dad was a law-abiding citizen, served 20 years (in the Air Force) and was a good person," she said. "If you knew him ... he would help anybody.
"That's why I don't understand this senseless crime."
Anyone with information about the case is asked to call CrimeStoppers at 955-8300 or by dialing *CRIME on a cellular phone.