Court hears of killer's abuse
POSTED: Thursday, May 28, 2009
Kauilani Keohokapu has been put in the position of providing information that could put her husband behind bars for a life prison term in the stabbing death of a 19-year-old man outside a Kaneohe bar.
The wife of Glenn Keohokapu, who stabbed a man last year, reluctantly testified about her husbands violent past, which could condemn him to more time in prison.
When Deputy Prosecutor Kristine Yoo asked Keohokapu yesterday to recall the events that resulted in two 1996 abuse cases against Keohokapu, she paused, wept and said, “;This is a part of my life that I never wanted to dig back up.”;
Her written statements say Keohokapu slapped, choked, bit and threatened to kill her.
Last month, the jury found Glenn Keohokapu Jr., 37, guilty of manslaughter in the death of 19-year-old Steven Wilcox last June.
The maximum penalty for manslaughter is 20 years in prison. But the state says Keohokapu is a persistent offender and is asking Circuit Judge Virginia Crandall to sentence him to life in prison with the possibility of parole for the protection of the public.
Glenn Keohokapu has already spent time in prison for second-degree robbery, first-degree burglary, drug promotion and abuse of a household or family member.
A judge can impose a longer-than-normal prison term if a jury finds the defendant eligible. A defendant can also waive a determination by a jury and leave it up to a judge or deem himself eligible.
Kauilani Keohokapu said yesterday her husband assaulted her to stop her from leaving and making noise. When he lunged at her, she said, his teeth cut her between the eyes.
After they married in early 2008, she said, Keohokapu grabbed, choked, pulled her hair and pushed her to the ground, which she cited in a request for a temporary restraining order that March. But she said she asked for the restraining order to get her car back because Keohokapu was running around with girls and smoking.
Crandall halted Kauilani Keohokapu's testimony after she asked for legal representation. She said she felt uncomfortable talking about what happened in the past because she played a role in her husband's actions.
“;I'm not going to sit here and act like an angel,”; she said.
In the robbery case, complaining witness Gregory Balga wrote in an October 1993 police statement that Keohokapu accused him of fooling around with Kauilani. Balga told police Glenn Keohokapu kicked him in the face and tried to force his way into the apartment he shared with his mother and sister, hitting his sister in the process.
Balga said yesterday he doesn't remember the incident.
A former Honolulu Police Department employee said he doesn't remember the events detailed in his July 1996 report, which says he took pictures of Keohokapu's bruised right eye and right shoulder bite mark.