Witnesses saw beach struggle


POSTED: Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Three Royal Hawaiian hotel employees told police they saw a man on top of someone who was kicking on the beach fronting the hotel early Oct. 2, according to court documents.

Three hours later the body of 25-year-old Bryanna Antone of New Mexico was found in the ocean near the site of the struggle.

Two of the employees said the person underneath was a woman, while the third was not sure. One of the employees, a cook, said he saw the man on top of the woman, “;either shoving or choking her with both hands near the throat area,”; the documents said.

The cook told police the man “;made the choking or shoving movement five times, then stopped, for a total of 30 repetitions,”; the documents said. He said it appeared the man was also trying to hug or kiss the woman, and she was kicking her legs, but that neither of them was making a sound during the encounter, which lasted about 10 minutes.

Convicted felon Aaron M. Susa, 31, told police he was with Antone at the beach and that they had sex. But he said he and Antone got into an argument later and left the beach in opposite directions.

Susa is charged with second-degree murder in connection with Antone's death. He faced the charge for the first time in Honolulu District Court yesterday and remains in custody, unable to post $500,000 bail.

The Honolulu medical examiner has not released what caused Antone's death. However, a coroner told police Antone had a fractured larynx and bruises on her neck and chest, the documents said.

Police said they found an envelope containing documents, a letter addressed to Susa and Antone's slippers on the beach near where bystanders pulled Antone's body from the ocean. They also said they found DNA matching Susa's on Antone's body.

Antone's younger brother told police he and his sister met Susa on Oct. 1 as they were listening to live music on Kalakaua Avenue across from the Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center. He said Susa introduced himself as “;Kevin”; and told the siblings he had just gotten out of jail that day.

State Public Safety officials said they released Susa on Oct. 1 on the 120th day of his four-month jail term for violating his probation for drug and drug paraphernalia possession.

Antone's brother said he, his sister, Susa and a member of the street band purchased some alcohol later at a convenience store and went to the Ohana Waikiki West hotel at about midnight to party. At the hotel, he said, his sister was drinking heavily and appeared to have taken an interest in Susa.

Susa told police he, Antone and her brother smoked “;weed”; before they went to the hotel.

The brother told police that at one point he and the band member left the hotel to buy food. When they returned, Antone and Susa were gone. The brother said he talked to Antone on the telephone at about 2:10 a.m. He said his sister told him she was on the “;South Shore.”; He said he also heard Susa's voice in the background.

Susa told police he took Antone to one of his favorite beach spots fronting the Sheraton Waikiki and Royal Hawaiian hotels, and the two started “;making out.”; He said Antone did not want to have sex on the beach, so they had sex in the ocean.

He also told police he scratched his chest on some rocks when he and Antone swam later in the ocean.

;[Preview]    New Details On Death Of Waikiki Tourist

Police say DNA found on Bryanna Antone matches that of Aaron Susa, the man charged with murdering her.

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Police found Susa on Oct. 5 hiding in the bushes at Liholiho and Kewalo streets. Susa gave officers a fake name and told them he had injected and drunk Drano, according to the court documents. It was determined that Susa had attempted suicide, and he was taken to the Queen's Medical Center. Detectives investigating Antone's death said Susa had scratches in the center and left side of his chest, left side of his abdomen, left hip, right pinkie finger and right side of his neck.

There is no mention in the court documents that the hotel employees reported what they saw on the beach before Antone's body was found. A police spokeswoman said that is part of the investigation.

A hotel spokeswoman says the hotel does have an employee policy for reporting crimes, but she did not describe the policy.