Child abduction alert comes late
Some glitches marked yesterday's first statewide test of the MAILE AMBER Alert system.
A technical problem caused the message to be sent about 15 minutes late in some areas on Oahu, while others got it on time, said Charlene Takeno, Missing Child Center Hawaii coordinator.
Oahu Civil Defense will look into the problem, she said. Test messages on Maui, Kauai and the Big Island were broadcast on time.
The system will be used to notify the public when a child has been abducted and to ask for help in locating the child and the abductor. State and local law enforcement agencies along with local broadcasters tested the system yesterday at 11:45 a.m.
The message was broadcast on TV and radio and displayed on Oahu's Department of Transportation highway signs (Oahu is the only island with the signs). A child abduction alert would instruct motorists to tune to their radios.
The alert will be used for victims 17 or younger believed to be in a life-threatening situation. Police must have useful information such as a description of the suspect or a description of the vehicle used in the abduction.
The program was named for Maile Gilbert, a 6-year-old Kailua girl who was abducted Aug. 25, 1985, from Kailua, and Amber Hagerman, 9, of Arlington, Texas. Gilbert's killer was found several hours later and led detectives to Kaena Point, where he buried her.
Mayor will tout city in Asia
Mayor Mufi Hannemann will travel to China and South Korea next month to promote Honolulu in business and tourism in a two-week trip paid for by several community groups.
The City Council approved gifts yesterday totaling $8,479 from three ethnic societies to pay for his airfare, lodging and meals from Oct. 9 to 17.
Samkoo Pacific in Honolulu and Incheon Metropolitan City in South Korea sponsored his Korea trip, where Hannemann will promote Honolulu at a sister city ceremony.
The United Chinese Society paid for Hannemann's stay in Zhongshan to celebrate the 10th anniversary of being sister cities and his travel to Hong Kong, where he will give a speech on business and tourism.
Seniors Fair speech covers teeth
Dr. Cecile Sebastian, general and cosmetic dentist, will discuss the importance of oral care for health in a talk at 10 a.m. tomorrow at the Seniors Fair at the Neal Blaisdell Center.
After her talk, titled "Life Enhancing Comprehensive Dentistry," Sebastian and her staff will be available at booth "N" to answer questions.
Admission is free to the fair, being held through Sunday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the exhibition hall.
Bennett goes south for meth talk
The top state prosecutor left yesterday for Mexico to discuss fighting the methamphetamine trade with attorneys general from other U.S. states and Mexico.
They will also talk about how to deal with human trafficking, said state Attorney General Mark Bennett. Mexico is a major source for meth, including much of what is sold in Hawaii.
"We're really looking forward to talking to our counterparts in Mexico about the problems we jointly face," Bennett said. He will be joined by the attorneys general of most Mexican states and those from Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico and North Dakota during the meeting today and tomorrow.
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration's Honolulu district office has said much of the methamphetamine and cocaine coming into the islands is being smuggled by drug cartels in Mexico.
Waikiki Hoolaulea to shut Kalakaua
The city will close Kalakaua Avenue from Lewers Street to Kapahulu Avenue tomorrow for the Aloha Festivals' annual Waikiki Hoolaulea.
Organizers say the roadway will be closed to vehicles from 5:30 p.m. to midnight.
However, Honolulu police will begin partially closing Kalakaua Avenue at 3:30 p.m. so organizers can begin setting up entertainment stages.
Police, Fire, Courts
Man turns self in over alleged attack
A 19-year-old man suspected of stabbing a relative surrendered to police Tuesday.
Police said the suspect and the 42-year-old male victim were arguing at a Waialua home at about 8 p.m. Monday when the suspect stabbed the victim and fled. The suspect turned himself in and was arrested on suspicion of second-degree assault. Police later released him pending further investigation.
Man reports being tied up in robbery
Police are looking for two suspects who allegedly broke into a Honolulu home, stole money from a 44-year-old resident, bound him and fled.
Police said the resident awoke at about 3:15 a.m. yesterday after hearing his front door being opened by a man in his 30s. The man, described as 5 feet 8 inches tall and 160 pounds, entered the man's bedroom allegedly holding a pipelike device and demanded money.
Police said the man took an undisclosed amount of money from the resident's wallet, then tied him up. The man left the room and could be heard speaking to another man.
The two men then fled, and the victim called for help from his neighbor, who called police.
Canadian visitor found in Kakaako
A 73-year-old Canadian visitor who was reported missing Tuesday was found later that night in Kakaako.
Margot Willis, who checked herself in to the Queen's Medical Center, was last seen at 3 a.m. yesterday. She suffers from dementia and schizophrenia.
Residents recognized her from a CrimeStoppers bulletin as she walked along Ward Avenue in Kakaako at about 10 p.m. Police said she was safe.
Police say man robbed Hilo store
Big Island police are looking for a man who they say robbed a department store in Hilo yesterday.
Big Island police are looking for this man in connection with a robbery yesterday at Macy's in Hilo.
Police said the man was looking at a watch at Macy's when he told an employee that he was taking it. He allegedly said something about shooting the employee but did not show a weapon. A witness reported seeing a bulge under the man's clothing.
The man, who appeared to be in his 20s, left in a blue Mazda Protege with tinted windows, a rear spoiler, after-market chrome rims and a white "stunna" graphic on the rear bumper. He has short black hair and is about 5 feet 10 inches tall and 175 pounds with a medium build. He was wearing a black T-shirt, shorts and slippers.
Anyone who sees the car or knows the man is asked to call Detective Robert Hatton at 961-2380, the nonemergency police number at 935-3311, or CrimeStoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo or 329-8181 in Kona.