Hokule'a sets sail from Okinawa
The voyaging canoe Hokule'a and the escort boat Kama Hele left Okinawa yesterday and are on their way to Kumamoto, Japan, the Polynesian Voyaging Society said in an e-mail.
The canoe left Itoman Harbor in Okinawa at about 1 p.m. yesterday Hawaii time.
The Hokule'a arrived in Okinawa April 24 after sailing 11 days and 1,162 miles from Micronesia.
It's the first time the Hokule'a has visited Japan. The trip commemorates ties between Japan and Hawaii that began in 1881 when Hawaii's King David Kalakaua opened the way for Japanese immigration to Hawaii.
Follow the voyage of Hokule'a at the Polynesian Voyaging Society web site at: www.pvs.hawaii.org
UH Astronomy Institute offers chance to learn
An "Astronomy School" will be featured today during this year's open house at the University of Hawaii's Institute for Astronomy, 2680 Woodlawn Drive.
Visitors at the event, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., will "learn how to measure the speed of a galaxy, analyze the light from a star and track the gyrations of Jupiter's moons," IFA said in a news release.
Activities will include tours of the IFA research laboratories, where the world's largest digital camera is being built, and lectures on Pluto, dark matter, traditional Hawaiian astronomy and other topics. Children can play Astro-Jeopardy, simulate a Mars landing using raw eggs and travel through space in the Starlab planetarium.
For more information, see http://www.ifa.hawaii.edu/open-house.
Psych test ordered for suspect
HILO » A judge ordered that a Big Island murder suspect be evaluated by a panel of three mental health experts after a report prepared by a state psychologist questioned whether Malaki McBride is mentally fit to be tried for the killing.
McBride, 17, allegedly shot Tyrone Torres, 21, to death Feb. 25 after Torres left a party south of Hilo with McBride's girlfriend.
State psychologist Thomas Cunningham says there is substantial reason to doubt McBride's fitness to proceed with his own defense, Hilo Family Court Judge Terence Yoshioka said Wednesday.
Cunningham prepared a report on whether McBride should continue to be held at the Hawaii Youth Correctional Facility or should be transferred to the state hospital at Kaneohe.
The judge ordered McBride to be examined by the panel at Kaneohe and to undergo treatment while there.
A hearing on the report of the experts will be heard on June 20.
Meanwhile, no action will take place on the prosecution's motion to move the case from Family Court to adult court.
Police, Fire, Courts
2 on motorcycle hurt in collision
A motorcyclist was in critical condition yesterday after a crash late Friday night that also sent his passenger to the hospital.
Police said a white 1999 Toyota Corolla was leaving a fish market on Farrington Highway when a 2002 yellow Suzuki motorcycle struck it.
The driver of the cycle, a 36-year-old Waipahu man, and a 36-year-old Waipahu woman, who was his passenger, were thrown from the cycle. Both were wearing helmets, but the driver received critical head injuries.
They were taken to the Queen's Medical Center.
The driver of the Toyota was taken to Hawaii Medical Center, where he was treated and released. Speed and alcohol do not appear to have been factors in the crash.
Motorcycle crash injures driver
A man in his 40s was in critical condition after a motorcycle crash in Waialua on Friday night, police said.
The Wahiawa man was riding a 1999 Harley-Davidson motorcycle makai on Wilikina Road behind a line of vehicles at about 7:30 p.m., police said.
When the first car ahead of him slowed to make a right turn on Kaukonahua Road, the motorcyclist swerved to avoid a collision with the car directly in front, but collided with the second car in the line, police said. The driver then swerved to the left shoulder and the man flew off the cycle, police said. The motorcyclist was not wearing a helmet.
He was taken to the Queen's Medical Center with critical injuries, police said.
Police closed Wilikina Road in both directions following the accident.
Police seek man in taxicab robbery
Police are looking for a man in his mid-20s who allegedly robbed a cab driver early yesterday morning.
At about 2:45 a.m. a 59-year-old cab driver picked up a man somewhere in town who asked to be dropped off at the Salt Lake fire station. When they arrived, the man allegedly put a knife behind the driver's head and demanded money.
The suspect took the money and fled the area.
Blaze consumes farm warehouse
Fire destroyed a farm warehouse in Pahoa yesterday morning, the Big Island Fire Department reported.
The 1,800-square-foot warehouse was engulfed when firefighters arrived at about 8:43 a.m. The fire was reported at 8:35 a.m. and extinguished at 10:05 a.m.
One person was reported injured. There was no further information given on the injury.
The warehouse contained packing materials and farming equipment. Two pickup trucks, a tractor and a forklift were consumed by the flames, the fire department said in a written release.
No damage estimate was available. The cause of the fire was a trash fire that spread to the warehouse.
Police seek 4 men after sex assault
Big Island police are looking for four men in an attempted sexual assault of a juvenile in the Puna district Wednesday.
Between 3 and 4 p.m., the girl was walking along Kaloli Drive in Hawaiian Paradise Park between 29th and 31st avenues when four men in a white four-door sedan with a red interior began following her, police said. Two men got out and chased the girl into the bushes where they grabbed her and tried to sexually assault her, police reported.
The girl fought off the men and ran away.
One man is described as 5 feet 5 inches tall with short hair, brown skin and brown eyes. His right eye is discolored. He was wearing a long-sleeved white shirt with black lettering on the sleeve and blue jeans, police said.
The second man is described as 5 feet 5 inches tall with short black and brown hair, brown eyes with a small scar to the left of his left eye. He was also wearing a white long-sleeved shirt and black shorts with red lettering.
Anyone with information is asked to call Detective Benton Bolos at 961-8883 or the police at 935-3311. Those wanting to stay anonymous can call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300.