Saturday, November 6, 1999

Xerox massacre

'We couldn't do anything to help'

Paramedics arriving at the scene
of Tuesday's shootings found none
of the men shot had a pulse
or were breathing

Bullet 9 mm handguns popular
Bullet Oceanic seeks injunction against ex-employee
Bullet Memorial service tomorrow

By Rod Ohira


Eight minutes after the first 911 call was received at 8:07 a.m. Tuesday, the first of three Emergency Medical Services units arrived at the Xerox building on North Nimitz Highway.

"Knowing that at least six people were shot, my biggest concern was where was the shooter," said Patricia Dukes, an EMS field operations supervisor who was working as a relief ambulance dispatcher that morning.

"I kept warning our crew going in to be careful."

Paramedics went into the building with police, and two minutes later they found that none of the seven men shot had a pulse or were breathing, Dukes said.


In today's Insight section:

Bullet UNDER THE GUN: Every workday, 16,400 threats are made and 723 workers are attacked in America. Employers cannot afford to ignore these dangers.

Bullet VOLCANIC ASH: Should Byran Uyesugi have been the eighth victim? Religion and ethnicity may determine your reply.

"We go in ready to help, so when we find there's nothing we can do to make a difference, it's very disturbing," she added. "We were there to do our best and couldn't do anything to help them.

"But at Sacred Falls a lot of people needed help, and I think we all felt after that we did the best we could," she said, referring to the Mother's Day rock slide at the falls which killed eight people and injured 32.

A source who observed the Xerox shooting scene said four of the seven victims -- including three of the five in a conference room -- appeared to be headed toward the door when they were shot.

That would indicate that Byran K. Uyesugi, who is charged with one count of first-degree murder and seven counts of second-degree murder in the incident, was inside the two rooms where the victims were found when he allegedly opened fire.

By Ronen Zilberman, Associated Press
Byran Uyesugi in Honolulu District Court yesterday.

Uyesugi, 40, a copier repairman, yesterday pleaded not guilty to killing co-workers Jason Balatico, Ronald Kawamae, John Sakamoto, Melvin Lee, Peter Mark, Ronald Kataoka and Ford Kanehira.

He is being held in lieu of $7 million bail.

A Xerox official said Uyesugi's employment was terminated following his arraignment in District Court.

Under state law the victims' families are entitled to $161,928 in workers' compensation payment. Xerox Corp. can only be sued by the families if there is negligence on the part of the company.

State Schools Superintendent Paul LeMahieu yesterday expressed sympathy to the families, noting that five of the victims had connections to public schools.

"We grieve for the victims' families and loved ones in the aftermath of this unthinkable crime," LeMahieu said in a written statement.

'We go in ready to help, so
when we find there's nothing we
can do to make a difference, it's
very disturbing. We were there
to do our best and couldn't
do anything to help them.'

Patricia Dukes


"Such violence shakes the foundations of all institutions and disrupts the fabric of our society."

The news had a direct impact on Fern Elementary in Kalihi.

Balatico's son and daughter attend the school, and his mother and sister-in-law are also employed there, LeMahieu said.

On Wednesday, the school held an assembly to explain the incident to students and offer sympathy and support for the Balatico family.

The superintendent also noted that Sakamoto's wife, Susan, is a teacher at Manoa School; Lee's son and daughter attend Pearl City High; Mark's eldest son attends Koko Head Elementary; and Kataoka's daughter is enrolled at Mililani Middle School.

Star-Bulletin writer Russ Lynch contributed to this report.

9 mm handguns
popular in isles

By Jaymes K. Song


Seven firearms on average have been registered each day this year on Oahu, according to Honolulu Police Department records.

From January to September, 1,903 firearms were registered with the department. The figure is comparable to numbers for the past four years.

There were 2,364 firearms registered last year, 2,636 in 1997, 2,180 in 1996, and 3,278 in 1995, police statistics show.

Although the department doesn't keep figures on what types of guns are being registered, the most common seems to be 9 mm handguns, said HPD management analyst Brandon Stone.

And according to local gun retailers, 9 mm handguns are also the most popular type of firearm sold.

At Magnum Firearms, the Austrian-made Glock is one of its best sellers because of the gun's quality, dependability and price. A Glock sells for about $500 to $600.

One salesman referred to Glocks as the "Honda Accords" of handguns.

A Glock allegedly was used by Xerox technician Byran K. Uyesugi in the shootings of his supervisor and six of his co-workers Tuesday morning.

Eighteen firearms were recovered from Uyesugi's Nuuanu home, including 11 handguns, five rifles and two shotguns.

Uyesugi had 17 registered firearms, but police would not confirm if the 9 mm semiautomatic Glock handgun reportedly used in the shooting was registered.

While President Clinton and state lawmakers are urging stricter gun control because of this year's rash of multiple murders in the workplace, school and church, gun owners say they are being unfairly targeted.

Magnum Firearms President Art Ong and many gun enthusiasts said guns aren't the problem -- it's the people using them.

Ong said anything can be used to kill someone else and, just like anything else, guns are "tools that can used for the right or wrong reason."

North Shore resident Felipa Williams, 52, purchased a .22-caliber handgun at Magnum Firearms yesterday. It is her second handgun.

"I don't want to ever use them," she said, "but there are too many criminals now. Private citizens have the right to defend themselves."

Williams and Ong said an incident like Tuesday's shootings is "one of a kind" and that most people own guns for self-defense or recreation and not to kill people.

Oceanic sees
ex-employee’s message
as serious threat

Star-Bulletin staff


Oceanic Cable officials are seeking a court injunction against a former employee after he allegedly threatened to harm them, alluding to the recent multiple slayings at the Xerox building earlier this week.

Don E. Carroll, president of Oceanic; Norman P. Santos, Oceanic vice president of operations; and Grant T. Sugai, Oceanic district manager, sought the action in documents filed yesterday in Circuit Court. According to the documents, former employee Reynold Lee since his termination has threatened them with physical harm, including a recent message they construed as a "serious and imminent threat."

On Thursday, Santos received a voice message from Lee on his recorder saying: "Remember the seven samurai, and I mean this, too -- seven -- and the forgotten seven that just happened recently. The stress can drive you nuts. Goodbye and aloha."

Lee's actions have caused company officials to fear for their safety and the safety of their employees, the documents say.

They ask that Lee be prevented from contacting, threatening or harassing them at work, or from entering any of Oceanic's work sites or offices.

Xerox Massacre

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