CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Alapeti Tunoa Jr. pleaded not guilty in District Court yesterday to second-degree murder in the death of ex-girlfriend Janel Tupuola.
Alapeti Tunoa indicted on murder, gun counts
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A grand jury handed down several charges yesterday against a 30-year-old man accused of beating a woman to death in front of horrified Kailua witnesses last week.
Alapeti Siuanu Tunoa Jr. faces charges of second-degree murder and assault, among other charges, after he allegedly killed his former girlfriend, 29-year-old Janel Tupuola. Tunoa pleaded not guilty in Honolulu District Court before the indictment was issued later in the day.
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The man accused of beating his former girlfriend to death in a Kailua public roadway in front of horrified witnesses pleaded innocent yesterday.
A state grand jury indicted Alapeti Siuanu Tunoa Jr. yesterday on charges of second-degree murder, first-degree criminal property damage, first-degree terroristic threatening, first-degree assault, place to keep loaded firearms, and possession of a firearm as a convicted felon.
Before the indictment, Tunoa pleaded not guilty in his initial appearance before a district judge.
Several deputy sheriffs were on hand as Tunoa entered the courtroom. Tunoa, who weighs 340 pounds and is 6 feet 2 inches tall, is accused of beating 29-year-old Janel Tupuola to death with a shotgun in a residential Kailua roadway.
Tupuola and Tunoa have two children together. Tupuola's relatives said she was trying to get away from Tunoa, but that he found her while waiting at a baby sitter's home.
Several witnesses said they watched helplessly as Tunoa beat Tupuola to death. A 69-year-old retired Marine tried to stop him. Police said Tunoa struck the man several times before turning his attention back to his ex-girlfriend.
Tunoa is being held in lieu of a $1 million bail. He was convicted of first- and second-degree robbery in 1996 and 1997 respectively, and has an extensive juvenile record.
Tupuola is survived by her parents and five children.