Tuesday, September 14, 1999

charged in sex
assault of girls

Protect the Planet founder
allegedly videotaped himself
assaulting his young victims

Bullet Neighbors not surprised
Bullet Year of cases summarized

By Debra Barayuga


Lured by the prospect of starring in commercials, girls agreed to be videotaped at his East Honolulu home.

Instead, Stuart Novick, 55, who worked with teenage girls as the founder of the environmental group Protect the Planet, made videotapes of the girls' breasts and buttocks, and of him sexually assaulting his young victims, according to court documents.

Novick pleaded not guilty yesterday in District Court to 62 charges, including first-degree child abuse, third-degree sexual assault and third-degree attempted sexual assault. Novick is being held on $1 million bail, and is expected to appear tomorrow in District Court for an evidentiary hearing.


Novick was arrested Friday while walking to his car at his Kalanikai Place home. A Child Protective Services worker had called police earlier, concerned because of a phone call Novick had made to his ex-wife, that Novick was planning to leave, court documents say.

A month earlier, one of his victims and a roommate of Novick's entered his home to locate the tape he had made of her and other girls, court documents say.

They found an upstairs closet with three or four shelves full of videotapes -- about 80 -- labeled with the names of different girls, some as far back as 1995, according to court documents.

The closet also contained filing cabinets full of neatly filed and categorized pornography, cut out from magazines.

Some of the pictures appeared to be of teens around 16 or 17 years old.

They also found a box of nude pictures which appeared to have been taken surreptitiously, a blue cooler containing Oriental pornography, two VCRs and a TV set.

Police began investigating Novick Aug. 11 after a complaint from YWCA President Susan Doyle. Protect the Planet used to meet at the YWCA, and members told Doyle that Novick had been making sexual videotapes of young girls at his home.

According to court documents, a 16-year-old female victim told police Novick had asked her to come to his Kalanikai Place home so he could videotape her for a commercial and check out her posture.

She said anyone who was being videotaped was asked to wear a bathing suit. Novick would say he needed to massage their bodies so they would be less tense, the police affidavit said. He allegedly would massage the girls until they fell asleep.

She and Herman Gilman IV, who lived on the ground level of Novick's two-story home because he worked for Novick, entered Novick's apartment/office Aug. 10 with a key he had been given.

Gilman found a list on a top shelf in the closet, and the 16-year-old recognized at least 14 names, including girls ranging from 8 years old to teens in high school. They turned the list over to police.

Police obtained a search warrant and searched Novick's home Aug. 19. They recovered hundreds of videotapes, pornographic magazines, photographs and sexual items.

That same day, Novick met with police and identified some of the girls he had videotaped. He said the girls were not conscious when the sex acts occurred.

After viewing the tapes, police located and interviewed at least two of the girls who were videotaped on Sept. 7.

One of the girls, 16, told police that when she was in the sixth grade, Novick had asked her to baby-sit his son. The tape Novick took of her at his Hiikala Place home was dated July 1995, when she was 12.

A 17-year-old girl told police Novick had videotaped her from when she was in the seventh grade to the 10th grade -- from June 1995 to December 1997 -- also at his Hiikala Place home and when he moved to his Kalanikai Place home.

Novick had lived at Hiikala Place from June 1994 to April 1996, then at Kalanikai Place from June 1996.

Novick was never an employee of, and is no longer affiliated with, the Laniakea YWCA.

He had approached the YWCA a year ago asking if the association would be willing to provide space for his youth volunteer organization to meet, said Gail Miyasaki, director of community relations.

The YWCA supported the group's concept and provided a meeting room. Novick and the YWCA mutually agreed to end the arrangement a month ago, about the time when allegations against him were being made known to Doyle.

None of Protect the Planet's members belonged to the YWCA and were already recruited by Novick from various Oahu schools when the group began meeting at the Richards Street location.


Several cases involving multiple sexual offenses against children in Hawaii courts in the past year:

Bullet Sept. 1: Larry Cox, 36, was sentenced to one year in jail and five years probation on sexual assault charges for fondling an 11-year-old girl at a Toys-R-Us store and a 12-year-old girl at a Salt Lake Kmart store. He pleaded no contest, and during therapy admitted he fondled more than 200 other children in toy stores.

Bullet Aug. 17: Thich An Than, 52, was sentenced to 40 years imprisonment after pleading no contest to 20 felony counts of sexual assault on a 14-year-old girl. The leader of a small Buddhist sect in Kilauea, Kauai, was originally indicted on 551 counts for having sexual relations with the girl during private religious classes since she was 11 years old.

Bullet Aug. 9: Bruce McShane, 60, a security guard at Waipahu Intermediate School, pleaded not guilty to attempted first-degree sexual assault and two counts of third-degree sexual assault for alleged abuse of a 14-year-old girl. He faces trial the week of Oct. 11.

Bullet July 30: William Sealy, registrar at Washington Intermediate School, pleaded not guilty to six counts of producing pornographic material involving minor boys and two counts of receiving child pornography over the Internet. He will be the first person in the state to stand trial under a new federal law making it illegal to produce child pornography using materials that have crossed state lines. His trial begins Oct. 19 in federal court.

Bullet April 13: Brian Ibaan, 40, a contract art teacher at Mililani Uka Elementary and other public schools, was charged with 14 counts of third-degree sexual assault for allegedly fondling nine female students, ages 10 and 11, in class. He pleaded not guilty and faces trial the week of Oct. 11.

Bullet March 25: Mililani Mauka Elementary teacher Kevin Kurasaki, 38, was charged with seven counts of sexual assault involving an 11-year-old girl. He pleaded not guilty. No trial date has been set.

Bullet Aug. 24, 1998: Hula teacher Howell "Chinky" Mahoe, 43, was sentenced to five years probation for sexually assaulting four boys, ages 9 to 14, from his dance classes. He pleaded no contest to five felony counts of third-degree sexual assault and one misdemeanor fourth-degree sexual assault charge involving incidents from 1994 to 1996.

Star-Bulletin staff

Neighbors say they weren’t
surprised by suspect’s arrest

By Crystal Kua


To fellow environmentalists, Stuart Novick was passionate about saving the Earth.

To his neighbors, Novick did things that seemed unusual.

But to police, Novick is a suspected child molester who allegedly captured dozens of girls on videotape in a sexual manner.

Detective Sheryl Sunia said investigators are looking to identify the children on the tape and are asking anyone who may have had contact with him or have children who may have had contact with him since 1992 to call CrimeStoppers.

"We just wish they would come forward to ease their own minds," Sunia said.

Neighbors who live near Novick's rented home on Kalanikai Place said something wasn't right about what was going on at Novick's house.

The neighbors, who asked not to be identified for fear of retribution, said there was a progression of young people going in and out of the house that he moved into about three years ago.

The neighbors said they weren't surprised when they heard about the charges against Novick.

They said police searched his home about three weeks ago and hauled away boxes of videotapes, files and other items.

A week before his arrest, Novick held a garage sale, which neighbors thought was peculiar because police had just been at his home.

They speculated that he might have been getting ready to leave.

Sunia also acknowledged that police feared he was a flight risk, but she said police arrested him after obtaining enough evidence to do so. She said he might have been raising bail money in anticipation of his arrest.

Novick was director of Protect the Planet, but he severed his ties with the organization last month, said Debbie Pollack, current director of the organization.

Pollack said Novick cited financial and personal troubles as reasons for leaving.

Pollack said that in her opinion, Novick strongly believed in the environmental cause but "I wasn't aware of any inappropriate behavior."

Pollack said Protect the Planet was formed in March 1998. She came on board in September of last year, the same month the group began meeting at the YWCA. Protect the Planet separated from the YWCA last month after police began investigating the allegations against Novick. The group is now seeking its own nonprofit status.

Pollack said because of the publicity surrounding the Novick's case, the activities of the group will be put on hold. She is afraid that the good work of the organization will now be tainted because of Novick's case. The organization's work included having young people pledge an environmental-friendly organization, establish corporate partnerships and set up a fund to help teachers finance environmental lessons.

"Protect the Planet has done nothing wrong," Pollack said.

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