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Thursday, September 21, 2000

Kauai suspect says
victims were going
to kill him

The Kauai man is accused
of slaying a neighbor and
wounding a stranger

By Anthony Sommer

LIHUE -- Howard Ikaika Giddens used a shotgun to seriously wound a total stranger and kill a neighbor he hardly knew Monday morning because he believed they were part of a conspiracy to kill him, according to Kauai police reports.

"You guys got to understand they got one hit on me," Giddens is quoted as telling detectives. "I protecting my family."

Giddens, 27, who is unemployed and goes by the nickname "Biggy," was arraigned in Kauai District Court this morning on charges of second-degree murder and attempted second-degree murder.

A preliminary hearing was scheduled for Monday.

In documents filed with the court late yesterday, police said their investigation showed Giddens and his girlfriend, Regina Peterson, who works for a rental car agency, took their son, Charles "Nui" Giddens, 7, to school at King Kaumualii Elementary on Monday morning. However, the child refused to go in the school, and Giddens began to drive home.

Peterson told police Giddens pulled onto a side road and parked. He took a shotgun and backpack full of shells out of the back of the sport utility vehicle and told Peterson to sit with the boy in the rear.

"He started going crazy, telling Nui he is sorry, and he got to do what he got to do, and for Nui just to stay with mom, daddy's going to jail," Peterson told police.

Giddens spotted a blue pickup truck and told Peterson it was one of the cars that had been following him around.

He followed the truck to Hanamaulu Beach Park where it stopped. Giddens got out of his vehicle, Peterson said, walked up to the blue pickup, yelled "Hey, punk!" and began shooting in the window.

Driving the blue pickup was Nelson Cuba, a homeless man who was living in a tent at the beach and who told police he had never seen Giddens before. Cuba was wounded in the head and neck. He escaped by putting his truck in gear and driving away.

Peterson told detectives she tried to drive their vehicle away but Giddens stopped her, got in and told her to drop him at their house and then drive to the police station and, "Tell the police what was going on and that he was going to get everybody that was out to get him."

When he got home, Giddens began walking the neighborhood with the shotgun. He walked up to his next-door neighbor, Colan Fernandes, 42, a janitor at an elementary school, who was waiting in his garage for a ride to work. Giddens fatally shot Fernandes several times with the shotgun, according to the court documents.

A neighbor who witnessed the shooting from her living room window, quoted Giddens as saying to Fernandes, "You f------ thing, you guys watching my family and me through one camera."

Giddens barricaded himself in the house briefly but surrendered when he was assured police would not harm him. He is being held in lieu of $166,668 bond.

Giddens told police he is a cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana user and that he had used marijuana sometime within five days before the shootings.

The prosecutor's office says Giddens has no criminal record.

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