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Conviction in lovers' spat draws maximum term


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POSTED: Thursday, November 26, 2009

A 65-year-old man convicted of murder in what prosecutors called a deadly lovers' spat faces a maximum term of life in prison with the possibility of parole at sentencing early next year.

Joel C. Allen is scheduled to go before Circuit Judge Michael A. Town for sentencing on Jan. 27. A jury deliberated less than a day before returning its verdict against Allen yesterday.

“;I'm, of course, happy with the verdict,”; said Deputy Prosecutor Darrell Wong. “;I think it reflects the community's willingness to come forward in these types of incidents.”;

Allen was charged in the July 17, 2008, stabbing of 35-year-old Jaylynn Namauu, a transgender female whose legal first name was Jason.

Prosecutors said the two had a relationship and only they know the reason behind the spat that escalated to violence. Allen's attorney argued the killing was in self-defense.

;  The two were sitting in Allen's parked car under the Keeaumoku Street overpass next to Cartwright Neighborhood Park.

Wong said Allen stabbed Namauu four times, once in the lung, causing her to bleed to death. Namauu also had cuts on her arms and legs that Wong described as defensive wounds.

Donald Wilkerson, Allen's attorney, said there was no spat. He said a drug-crazed Namauu attacked Allen after Allen refused to give her $250 to buy more drugs.

The Honolulu medical examiner said it found methamphetamine in Namauu's system and listed it as a contributing factor in the death. Wilkerson said police also found drug paraphernalia in Namauu's purse.

Allen ran from the car after three bystanders intervened and halted the stabbing, Wong said.

“;These were good Samaritans who put themselves in harm's way,”; Wong said. “;Although they were not able to save the victim, they made sure the defendant did not get away and he was prosecuted accordingly.”;

Wilkerson argued the bystanders saved Allen from further attack by Namauu.

At trial, the defense argued there was no relationship between Allen and Namauu and denied that Allen had previously pursued relationships with other transgender females, as prosecutors alleged.

Wilkerson did not return a telephone message seeking comment yesterday.