UH law school among top 100
The University of Hawaii's William S. Richardson School of Law moved up to 82nd place in the annual U.S. News & World Report magazine's graduate school rankings, the law school said in a news release.
The school was ranked at 91 out of the top 100 law schools last year.
The magazine also ranked the law school as the 14th most selective and its faculty-to-student ratio is among the top five in the country. UH law school students also graduate with the seventh lowest average debt and its bar passage rate is among the top 25 of the top 100 schools.
Last year, the law school was ranked in the top 20 for environmental law and diversity, but "barely missed" making those lists this year, according to spokeswoman Cynthia Quinn.
The UH-Manoa College of Education ranked 65th out of 278 schools surveyed, the university said in another news release. The college did not participate in the survey last year, but was ranked 60th in 2006.
The Shidler College of Business was ranked 21st last year for its master's in international business. But this year, U.S. News & World Report listed only the top 20 schools, said spokeswoman Dolly Omiya.
The John A. Burns School of Medicine, which was ranked 12th last year for its geriatric medicine program, did not participate in the U.S. News surveys this year, said spokeswoman Tina Shelton.
Thai festival celebrates Buddha
Thai folk dances and a kick-boxing demonstration will be the entertainment tomorrow as the Thai Buddhist community celebrates the birthday of Buddha.
The Thak Songkran Festival will be from 10:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. at Kapiolani Park Bandstand. The event is free and open to the public.
Thai food will be on sale with proceeds to support the Thai Buddhist Temple of Hawaii.
Participants may celebrate the birth of Shayamuni Buddha 2,500 years ago by pouring water over statues of the baby Buddha.
Police, Fire, Courts
GARY T. KUBOTA / GKUBOTA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Finau Finau's home was gutted by a fire in Lahaina Thursday night, displacing three families.
Family grateful to survive fire
LAHAINA » Finau Finau said that although her seven family members and relatives lost most of their possessions, she's grateful none of them was injured in the fire that gutted their home Thursday in Lahaina.
"We're safe, and that's good," said Finau.
She said she's sad about losing many photographs of her children, including her son Tevita Finau, who recently signed to play football with the University of West Virginia.
Tevita Finau caught the winning touchdown in the Kahuku High football team's championship win over Kailua in 2003.
"All my scrapbooks of my boys playing since they were young are gone," Finau Finau said.
She said she and her husband, Tolu, moved into the house owned by relatives to save money to send to Tevita and his two brothers, who are attending a junior college on the mainland.
The Finaus said after the fire that they were overwhelmed by friends who offered them a place to stay.
Finau Finau said she was in the bedroom when she smelled the odor of gas and she and her husband began walking around the house.
She said her husband eventually walked to another family unit and opened the door, only to find a room full of flames.
Suspect sought in failed bank heist
Police are looking for a man who attempted to rob a bank in the Ala Moana area yesterday afternoon.
A man entered an American Savings Bank branch and allegedly held up a note demanding money about 3:50 p.m. yesterday, police said. When the teller failed to immediately comply, the man fled on foot.
Man accused in girl's sex assault
Police arrested a 34-year-old Kailua man for allegedly sexually assaulting a 10-year-old girl in Kailua.
The girl told relatives March 31 that the man, a family friend, had had inappropriate sexual contact with her prior to March 29, police said.
The man turned himself in to police yesterday and was arrested for investigation of first-degree sexual assault. He was released pending further investigation.
Inmate arrested on ID theft charges
Charges are pending against a 36-year-old Halawa Correctional Facility inmate suspected in several identity theft cases.
The man was already in custody when a police investigation led to the suspect. He was arrested yesterday morning
at the prison for investigation of four counts of forgery,
manufacture of deceptive
identification and drug and firearm offenses.
Heart attack killed lawyer in crash
HILO » Attorney Robert "Ben" Tsukazaki, involved in a single car crash in Kona Thursday, died as the result of a heart attack rather than from the crash, according to autopsy results released by police yesterday.
Tsukazaki, 60, had been driving in the Kailua-Kona direction on Mamalahoa Highway when the 8:53 a.m. crash took place.
The crash will not be considered a traffic fatality. The Big Island traffic toll stands at 11 for the year compared with 12 at the same time last year.
[ THE COURTS ]
No data on Jervis without court's OK
Lawyer Paul Cunney says he will not publicly release any information about the state's case against his client, former Bishop Estate trustee Gerard Jervis, including polygraph test results, without first checking with the court.
Cunney announced Monday that he had polygraph test results to bolster Jervis' claims of innocence in the state's case against him for alleged criminal property damage, terroristic threatening, harassment and operating a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol. The charges stem from a March 7 incident near his Lanikai home involving four Saint Louis School students.
Cunney, his fellow defense attorneys and Deputy City Prosecutor Darrell Wong agreed to abide by the rules of professional conduct for Hawaii lawyers yesterday following a meeting with Circuit Judge Randal Lee.
Lee said the release of information outside judicial proceedings might lead to erroneous, inaccurate or misleading media reports. He also pointed out that polygraph test results are not admissible as evidence under Hawaii law because of their inaccuracy and lack of scientific reliability.
Man acquittedof Waianae killing
An Oahu jury found Gary Avilez not guilty of murder yesterday in connection with the death of a disabled man last year at the Waianae Burger King restaurant.
Domingo "Junior" Correa, 69, died following an April 7, 2007, fight in the restaurant's restroom.
Deputy public defender Randall Hironaka said Avilez, 54, fought Correa in self-defense and did not intend to kill him.
20-year sentencein Maui meth case
A 36-year-old Maui man was sentenced to 20 years in prison for conspiracy and possession with intent to distribute more than 500 grams of methamphetamine.
U.S. District Judge J. Michael Seabright yesterday sentenced Nathaniel Russell, also known as "Bobo," who had pleaded guilty to the charges.
Russell headed an extensive methamphetamine distribution operation on Maui from January 2005 to July 2005, the U.S. Attorney's Office in Hawaii said.
Russell was the last of 10 defendants sentenced in this case, including his former wife, Pamela Mealani Newton, and Maui residents John Corniel Jr., Cyrinah L. Aken, Charles R.K. Farren, Roger Manu Bates and Reed Kaleookalani Aken Sr.
Russell got his methamphetamine from Las Vegas through three Las Vegas men - Leandro Gomez III, Timothy James Sullivan and Gilbert Gomez, the U.S. Attorney's Office said.
They sent pounds of methamphetamine to Russell via parcel shipments and couriers, while Russell sent the money back to them through the same means.
Police caught Reed Aken carrying 2 pounds of methamphetamine under his clothes at the Los Angeles International Airport. Law enforcement also seized a 5-pound shipment of methamphetamine that Leandro Gomez had mailed to Russell.
Sentences for the other defendants ranged from 27.7 years for Leandro Gomez to four years for Reed Aken.