State lets feds take slaying case
A state judge dismissed state murder and firearm charges against accused killer Rodney Joseph Jr. yesterday at the request of city prosecutors.
Deputy Honolulu Prosecutor Lucianne Khalaf asked Circuit Judge Michael Town for the dismissals because of Joseph's upcoming federal trial on similar charges for the same incident, "based upon a reassessment of circumstances as recently as last week."
Joseph's trial in U.S. District Court is scheduled to start Feb. 12. His lawyer, Reginald Minn, questioned yesterday why the city prosecutor did not ask to dismiss the state charges earlier, after a grand jury charged his client with the federal charges in March 2006.
"We've been strung out basically for two years," he said.
Minn complained that because Joseph has been in state custody, he will not get any credit for that prison time should he receive a federal jail sentence.
Khalaf has also asked to dismiss state charges against Joseph's co-defendants, Kevin Gonsalves and Ethan Motta. Their hearing before Town is scheduled for Tuesday.
A state grand jury charged the three men with first-degree murder, second-degree murder and attempted second-degree murder in the shooting deaths of two men and wounding of a third man in an attack at the Pali Golf Course parking lot in January 2004. They face the same and additional charges in federal court.
Beretania Street repairs planned
The city is urging motorists to avoid using Beretania Street between Alapai and Lauhala streets through Jan. 11 because of reconstruction and resurfacing work.
Various lanes will be closed from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. tomorrow. Then, starting 8 p.m. tomorrow, all three mauka lanes will be closed until 5 a.m. Tuesday. The city will resume various overnight lane closures Tuesday to Jan. 11.
Special-duty police officers will guide motorists through the work area.
The work includes reconstructing sidewalks and roadways, removing old asphalt and laying down new surfaces, replacing concrete bus pads and installing curb ramps. Contractors will also adjust utility boxes and manholes, replace signs and reflector markings, improve drainage and install pavement markings.
News media internships offered
Fifteen paid summer internships are being offered this summer through the Society of Professional Journalists-Hawaii Chapter in print and broadcast journalism and public relations.
Preference is given to applicants who attended high school in Hawaii and are enrolled in a college or university, according to the SPJ-Hawaii chapter. Preference is also given to students enrolled in a college or university in Hawaii.
Applicants will be considered only if they will have completed their sophomore year of college by June. Recent graduates are also eligible.
Full-time SPJ internships will last at least 10 weeks, and interns will be paid at least $3,250, at the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, the Honolulu Advertiser, the Maui News (for Maui residents), Pacific Business News, Hawaii Business magazine, Honolulu magazine, Island Scene magazine, Trade Publishing Co., Alexander & Baldwin Inc., Bright Light Marketing Group and KHNL Channel 8.
Part-time internships will last eight weeks at 27 hours a week, and interns will earn $1,750, at KGMB Channel 9, KHON Channel 2, KITV Channel 4 and Hawaii Public Radio.
Applicants must submit an application form, letter of introduction, samples of work and a copy of a college transcript. Application forms are available at www.hawaiispj.org.
Applications must be postmarked by Feb. 19 and mailed to Internship Committee, SPJ-Hawaii Chapter c/o 1314 S. King St. No. 718, Honolulu, HI 96814. Late applications will not be considered. Application materials will not be returned.
For more information, contact SPJ-Hawaii internship chairman Craig DeSilva at 282-1038 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Maui students will float to fest
WAILUKU » Kamehameha High School's Maui Campus will be representing students on the Valley Isle in the 14th Annual Honolulu Festival on March 14-16.
The students, winners of the Fifth Annual Maui Mikoshi Design Contest, will march in a parade through Waikiki on March 16.
A "mikoshi" is a decorative, portable float carried in parades on the shoulders of about 20 to 30 people.
The contest is sponsored by the Honolulu Festival Foundation to educate youth about Japanese traditions.
Kamehameha High School's Maui Campus was selected for designing the best mikoshi.
The winner receives some 30 to 40 airfares for students and chaperones, along with hotel rooms and ground transportation.
Police, Fire, Courts
Girlfriend arrested in alleged assault
A 24-year-old woman was arrested for allegedly threatening to stab her boyfriend during an argument at their Kalihi home.
At 2:45 p.m. Sunday, police said, the woman and her boyfriend, 31, were arguing when she allegedly punched him in the mouth and threatened to stab him with a kitchen knife.
Police arrested her on suspicion of first-degree terroristic threatening and abusing a household member.
Threat via phone leads to arrest
A 24-year-old man was arrested Tuesday for allegedly threatening a woman's life over the phone.
Shortly after 10 a.m. Tuesday, the suspect allegedly threatened a 24-year-old woman's life via phone. At about noon the suspect showed up at the woman's Kalihi-area home.
Police were called and booked the suspect on suspicion of first-degree terroristic threatening.
Suspect sought in bank heist
Police are looking for a man who robbed a McCully bank yesterday morning.
Police said the man walked into the McCully-Young Street branch of American Savings Bank at 1018 McCully St. about 10:25 a.m.
He passed a note to the teller and demanded money, police said. The man was last seen heading west on Young Street, police said.
The man is described as between 40 and 50 years of age, 5 feet 9 inches tall, 160 pounds, with a black mustache and goatee. He was wearing a blue T-shirt with light-colored trim on the collar and sleeves, and brown pants.
Anyone who might be able to provide information on the robbery or identify the suspect is asked to call CrimeStoppers at 955-8300 or *CRIME on a cell phone.
Man flees after robbery attempt
A teller at a Kalihi bank refused to comply with demands of a man who attempted to rob her yesterday afternoon.
Police said a man in his early 20s walked into the Hawaii National Bank and handed a demand note to the teller.
When the teller refused to give the man anything, he ran, police said.
The attempted robbery occurred at 2:22 p.m. at 1505 Dillingham Blvd.
The man is described as 5 feet 6 inches tall, 160 pounds, with black hair and black eyes, police said.
Released inmate charged in attack
HILO » An Oahu man who recently completed a 20-year prison sentence for manslaughter has been charged with attempted murder on the Big Island.
Big Island police say a tip led Honolulu police to arrest 48-year-old Fred Silva III in Waianae. He is expected to be returned to the Big Island within the next several days.
Silva allegedly used a rubber mallet and a baseball bat to beat a Puna man in his Fern Forest home Nov. 25. The victim lost consciousness and suffered numerous broken bones and internal injuries.
An arrest warrant was issued for Silva after the victim provided a partial identity of his attacker.
Police say Silva was convicted of manslaughter on Oahu in 1986.