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Attempted-killing charges dropped


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POSTED: Saturday, August 29, 2009

The city prosecutor dropped attempted-murder charges yesterday against three men accused of beating a 20-year-old man with bats and a metal pipe in a street brawl in Wahiawa in June 2008.

After speaking with more witnesses and the defendants, investigators determined it was the victim and his friends who went to the 300 block of California Avenue with bats, challenged the defendants and started the fight, said Franklin Pacarro Jr., deputy city prosecutor.

The investigators also determined that the defendants did not beat the victim, and the person who did has since died, Pacarro said.

Police administered a lie detector test on one of the defendants, Logovii Talo, a few months ago which cleared him and his co-defendants and identified the true assailant, said Walter Rodby, Talo's lawyer.

Following the June 29, 2008, incident, Talo, 25, remained in custody unable to post $100,000 bail until Dec. 1, after Circuit Judge Karen Ahn reduced his bail first to $75,000, then to $50,000.

Failua Sione, 26, remained in custody until Aug. 13, 2008, after Ahn reduced his bail to $65,000.

And Fetuli Vakameilalo posted $100,000 bail Sept. 23.

Police went to California Avenue after receiving reports of 15 to 30 males fighting with baseball bats in the middle of the roadway. When they arrived they found two groups of about 20 to 30 men and women yelling at each other from different sides of the street.

They also found then-20-year-old Rooney Racoma lying unconscious and bleeding in the middle of the roadway.

The state said Racoma suffered numerous head injuries including an open skull fracture and facial fractures, brain injuries and numerous cuts. An ambulance took him in critical condition to the Queen's Medical Center.