By Star-Bulletin Staff

Monday, May 4, 1998

Isle association takes hold of USS Missouri

Navy Secretary John Dalton today turned over the keys of the battleship Missouri to the USS Missouri Memorial Association in Hawaii, clearing the way for the ship to leave Washington state in mid-May.

In making the announcement today, U.S. Sen. Daniel Inouye said "The USS Missouri will most certainly be accorded the highest honors and utmost respect she deserves when she arrives at Pearl Harbor in June."

"We've cleared all legal hurdles," said Roy Ree, president of the association, "and everything is on schedule for the ship to be towed."

The Missouri will first be towed to a mooring in the Columbia River at Astoria, Ore., where freshwater will eliminate marine organisms that might have accumulated on the ship's hull.

The memorial is scheduled to be opened to the public in January 1999 and will be berthed at Ford Island.

Pair accused of bilking state in welfare fraud

An Oahu grand jury has indicted Robin L. Romero and Robert Harry Loeffler for second-degree theft in connection with alleged welfare fraud.

The co-defendants are accused of bilking the state out of more than $19,000.

Romero, also known as Lynie R. Romero, Lynie L. Romero Smith and Lynie R. Smith, was extradited from California recently.

Loeffler, of Waikiki, is said to have assisted Romero in fraudulently obtaining welfare benefits from Aug. 21, 1995, through Aug. 31, 1996, according to the indictment.

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By Star-Bulletin staff

Water main break shuts University Avenue area

A section of University Avenue between Maile Way and Metcalf Street was closed to traffic in both directions today after a 12-inch water main broke.

The break was reported at 3:45 a.m. Repair work was expected to last most of the day, affecting traffic in and out of Manoa Valley and around the University of Hawaii campus.

Driver booked, released after fatal auto crash

A 26-year-old Pearl City man was arrested on suspicion of drunken driving following a fatal auto collision Saturday night at the intersection of Waimano Home Road and Moanalua Road, Pearl City.

The man, who was driving a sedan that broadsided another car at 6:10 p.m., was booked and later released pending further investigation.

Irene Thoene, 73, of Pearl City was killed in the crash.

Her death was the 21st traffic fatality on Oahu this year.

Woman hospitalized; stabbed at Wailuku

WAILUKU -- A 31-year-old Maui woman was listed in guarded condition this morning in the intensive care unit at Maui Memorial Hospital after being stabbed in the abdomen, Maui Police said.

Sgt. Melvin Lorenzo said hospital officials reported the woman's injury to police at 5:38 p.m. yesterday. He said the woman said she was stabbed by a 44-year-old woman while she was at a Wailuku residence along Waiale Drive at about 5:25 p.m. yesterday.

Hauula man arrested on auto theft charge

A 36-year-old Hauula man received a double dose of trouble yesterday after allegedly driving off in his brother's car without permission.

Two of his brothers caught up with him after he took the car from a Kukuna Road residence. He reportedly was choked and hit with a rock. He was treated at Castle Hospital and released, then arrested for auto theft.

While he was being booked at the Kaneohe police station, an officer recognized him as a suspect in a Saturday night robbery.

Radio-TV personality arrested on Big Isle

WAIMEA, Hawaii -- Radio and television personality Brickwood Galuteria was charged Saturday with drunken driving, Big Island police said.

Galuteria, 42, was stopped at 11:25 a.m. while driving on Mamalahoa Highway outside of Waimea.

In other news . . .

HILO -- Two Kona men were hurt in a one-car accident at 4:03 a.m. Sunday on Saddle Road.

Police said the driver, 22, and a passenger, 22, suffered head injuries. The driver was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol.

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