Police, Fire, Courts

By Star-Bulletin Staff

Friday, March 30, 2001

TheBus officials say brakes inspected weekly

The National Transportation Safety Board is urging inspections of trucks and buses that use the same braking system as a bus that crashed in New Jersey in 1998, killing eight passengers. Out-of-adjustment brakes can cause a bus to rotate after sudden braking.

Honolulu's city buses contain the same brand of equipment, which is inspected weekly, officials said.

Automatic brake adjusters are designed to respond to wear in the brake lining and keep a vehicle's left- and right-side brakes roughly equal in condition.

"I can guarantee we do a weekly inspection of brakes, primarily because we have never been satisfied with automatic brake adjusters," said Roger Morton, senior vice president of Oahu Transit Services.

Queen's seeks students for summer program

Young people interested in a medical career can see what it's like firsthand during the Queen's Medical Center's Summer Student Volunteer Program. "The volunteers learn new skills while interacting with patients, staff and visitors," said Annette Ternes, program coordinator.

High school and college students may apply for the two seven-week sessions. The first is from June 4 to July 20, the second, June 18 to Aug. 3. College students must apply by April 23, high school students by May 1.

Students must be at least 15 years old when the sessions open. They must work two four-hour shifts per week.

For more information, call Queen's at 547-4397.

New student member named to UH regents

The governor has appointed Capsun Poe as student member of the University of Hawaii Board of Regents.

Poe's confirmation hearing before the state House Higher Education Committee will be at 1 p.m. Wednesday.

Poe will be replacing student regent Sat Khalsa, whose two-year term ends June 30. Khalsa did not seek reappointment.


Corrections and clarifications

The Honolulu Star-Bulletin strives to make its news report fair and accurate. If you have a question or comment about news coverage, call Publisher and Editor in Chief John Flanagan at 529-4748 or email him at

[ Police, Fire, Courts ]


By Star-Bulletin staff

Honolulu Police Department Crimestoppers

One dead, one critical in separate car crashes

One man is dead and another is in critical condition following separate one-car accidents on Oahu this morning.

The fatal accident occurred at 3:48 a.m., a mile south of Thompson Corner on Kauko-nahua Road, police said. The man was taken to Queen's Medical Center where he later died.

The other crash happened at 1:58 a.m. on Nimitz Highway near Kmart. Honolulu police traffic investigators said the car was traveling west on Nimitz when the driver failed to negotiate a turn and slammed the car into a pole.

A 25-year-old man is in critical condition at Queen's Medical Center. Another man, 24, is listed in fair condition.

Police seek robbers who also kidnapped club valet

Police are asking for the public's help in identifying two men said to be in their early 20s who attacked a valet at Venus Nightclub at 1349 Kapiolani Blvd.

Police said the victim was counting the night's money at 4 a.m. March 15 and was getting into his car when he was confronted by the men.

Both men then assaulted the valet, forced him to drive them to Waipahu and Waianae and also ripped the stereo out of his car.

One suspect is described as a male with black, short, straight hair, 5 feet 8 inches to 5 feet 10 inches tall, about 160 pounds. Police believe his name is Chris and that he lives in the Yokohama Bay area of Waianae. The other man is described as having bleached blond, short, straight hair, 5 feet 8 inches to 5 feet 10 inches tall, between 160 and 180 pounds. He is said to have a tan complexion and may live in the Waianae area.

Anyone with any information about this case is asked to call CrimeStoppers at 955-8300 or *Crime on your cellular phone.

Two arrested at airport had drugs, $97,000 cash

U.S. Customs Service officials arrested two men carrying methamphetamine and large amounts of undeclared cash as they waited to board a Philippine Airlines flight for Manila on Wednesday.

One of the men, 46, from Ewa Beach, was carrying 12 grams of the drug, a glass smoking pipe suspected of containing methamphetamine residue and $63,829 in cash, customs officials said. The other man, 47, from Wahiawa, was carrying two pipes containing methamphetamine residue and $34,020 cash.

Also on Wednesday, police at Honolulu Airport arrested a 22-year-old California man carrying 1 kilogram of methamphetamine strapped to his body under his clothing.

The man had just arrived on a flight from Los Angeles.

Police want another call on West Loch remains

Honolulu police are asking the person who told CrimeStoppers about a discovery of skeletal remains in the West Loch area to call back with more information.

Based on the call, police did an unsuccessful ground and air search Tuesday of the trails along the West Loch shoreline.

"We are unsure as far as what exact trail. Because we do know that there are regular bike paths in the area off the West Loch shoreline park. We did search that area," said Phil Camero of the Missing Persons Detail.

The anonymous caller said he found a beige bag containing skeletal remains.

Camero declined to elaborate on exactly what the caller said was inside the bag.

Bank robber got his $100 -- but FBI has his name

The man who robbed the Waipahu branch of the Bank of Hawaii Tuesday got away with a single $100 bill, according to a criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court.

And the FBI knows who it is looking for, thanks to tips to CrimeStoppers.

According to the complaint, the man entered the bank at 94-712 Farrington Hwy. at 9 a.m. and handed a teller a note that read, "Put $100.00 dollars Bills In Black Purse. I HAVE a gun. Don't be foolish."

The suspect also said, "Don't be foolish" to the teller, who then handed the man a single $100 bill.

Tips from people who saw the suspect's picture in news releases identified him. FBI agents then conducted a photographic lineup for the teller, who positively identified the suspect.

Find of body at Pokai Bay is confirmed drowning

The Honolulu Medical Examiner's office has confirmed that a 19-year-old man drowned along the Waianae coast this week.

A fisherman spotted the body of Alika Apela in waters off Pokai Bay Beach Park on Wednesday. Apela's family members had reported him missing Monday. Honolulu police said there was no indication of foul play.

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[The Courts ]

Officer honored in fire is charged in sex assault

An Oahu grand jury has indicted a Honolulu police officer accused of sexually assaulting a North Shore woman while on duty.

An arrest warrant has been issued for Jerry Gallardo, 33, who was charged yesterday with second-degree sexual assault and six counts of fourth-degree sexual assault. Bail has been set at $50,000.

Gallardo has been a patrolman with the department for the past two years, more recently at the Wahiawa station. Since his initial arrest Oct. 21, Gallardo has been assigned to desk duty at the main police station.

The assaults allegedly occurred Sept. 30 at a North Shore home, but the woman did not report the incident until two weeks later.

Gallardo was among three officers who were honored last April for putting out an apartment fire in Waikiki and rescuing an elderly woman.

Six prosecuted for trying auto insurance fraud

Six Hawaii residents have been prosecuted in Circuit Court for auto insurance fraud.

"Insurance companies are not the only victims of insurance fraud," Insurance Commissioner Wayne Metcalf said yesterday. "We all pay higher insurance premiums as a result of these crimes."

Among those sentenced were:

>> Anthony and Aileen Solaita, for insurance fraud and attempted theft in the second degree. Anthony was ordered to perform 100 hours of community service and pay $100 for each charge to the Crime Victim Compensation Fund. Aileen was ordered to perform 150 hours of community service, pay $100 to the compensation fund and pay a $100 probation services fee.

>> Whalenn Kahala was sentenced for insurance fraud and theft in the second degree. Kahala was ordered to pay back AIG Hawaii Insurance Co. the amount of $4,534.60 and to perform 100 hours of community service.

>> Jacob I. Nawatani was sentenced for insurance fraud and attempted theft in the second degree. He was ordered to pay the compensation fund $200 and perform 100 hours of community service.

>> Matthew David Shoup was sentenced for insurance fraud and attempted theft in the third degree. Shoup was ordered to perform 100 hours of community service. Also, Shoup was required to provide a letter of apology and $1,426.74 restitution to AIG Hawaii.

>> Ferlin L. Espinal is expected to be sentenced in June for charges of insurance fraud and theft in the second degree.

Anyone with information about a person who may be filing a false auto insurance claim is encouraged to call the Insurance Fraud Hotline at 587-7416.

Chiropractor's employee accused of embezzling

A federal grand jury has indicted an employee of Tri-Star Health Care for allegedly embezzling more than $148,000 for her personal use.

Abigail Q. Paulino, who handled payments from insurance companies, is accused of forging numerous checks payable to Tri-Star -- making them payable to herself -- from April 25, 1997, to May 28, 1999.

Each count of the 42-count indictment filed yesterday in U.S. District Court represents each check she allegedly forged during the two-year period.

Tri-Star provided chiropractic care to patients injured in car accidents. Paulino worked for Tri-Star from April 1996 to May 1999.

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