Police, Fire, Courts

Star-Bulletin staff and wire


Pete Cabrinha, of Hawaii, surfed a 70-foot wave at the break known as "Jaws" on Maui's North Shore on Jan. 10, in this photo released yesterday by Billabong. The wave broke the world record for biggest wave ever ridden at the Billabong XXL Global Big Wave Awards in California on Sunday. Cabrinha is a world-renowned master of big-wave tow surfing, windsurfing and kitesurfing.

Deadline is midnight for state income taxes

State income taxpayers can drop their returns off until midnight today at the state Department of Taxation's curbside service.

Taxpayers can drive to either the Halekauwila Street or Punchbowl Street side of the Princess Ruth Keelikolani Building at 830 Punchbowl St. between 5 p.m. and midnight and hand their forms to waiting volunteers.

The forms do not need to be in envelopes, but all pages and attachments should be stapled, the department said. Last year, about 2,700 taxpayers used the service.

Of course, taxpayers can still mail their returns today, but post offices are not offering extended hours.

Lum is named acting Kauai police chief

LIHUE >> Lt. King Chi "K.C." Lum was named acting police chief Friday by the Kauai Police Commission.

Lum, 55, a 21-year veteran of the department, will replace Acting Chief Willie Ihu, who is scheduled to retire May 1. Ihu has been the interim chief since George Freitas accepted a $200,000 buyout and retired last year.

Lum is among the applicants for the permanent post. The Police Commission has stated publicly that it will go slowly in picking a new chief.

Former state attorney suspended indefinitely

The Supreme Court of Hawaii suspended a former deputy attorney general from the practice of law yesterday.

Edwin L. Baker was suspended because he failed to cooperate with an Office of Disciplinary Counsel investigation, according to a news release from the office. The investigation involved Baker's "professional conduct in three cases."

Baker cannot practice law until he is reinstated by the Supreme Court of Hawaii. The investigation of the pending complaints will continue, the office said.


[Taking Notice]

>> Elizabeth "Betsy" Sloane, University of Hawaii Foundation president, has been named associate dean for development and alumni relations for Harvard Divinity. Donna Vuchinich, vice president of development for the UH Foundation, became acting president on April 1.

>> Mid-Pacific Institute, a college-preparatory school in Manoa Valley, has received five gifts from the following donors:

Harold K.L. Castle Foundation, $100,000 for emergency costs incurred due to the demolition of Wilcox Hall and the relocation of the boarding house;

LeBurta Atherton Foundation, $100,000 to assist with the Wilcox Hall demolition;

G.N. Wilcox Trust, $50,000 to install air conditioning in Atherton Pavilion;

The Hawaii Community Foundation, $28,000 for the Epiphany Elementary School's transition of faculty and curriculum to the new facility at Mid-Pac;

Minnie Ho Pang, $20,000 to establish the H.Q. and Minnie Ho Pang fund, a donor-advised permanent fund to benefit the arts program.

>> The J. Walter Cameron Center in Wailuku, which houses and supports nonprofit agencies that provide health, social services, culture and arts assistance, spent $13,000 to complete the renovation of its heated therapeutic pool and $24,000 to provide a handicap-accessible restroom nearby.

>> Goodwill Industries of Hawaii raised more than $73,000 for the agency's employment service programs for people with disabilities and other barriers to employment through its 13th Annual Fundraising Auction.

>> Trinity Christian School in Kailua received $15,000 from the Atherton Family Foundation to help replace its termite-eaten playground structures.

>> Brendon Burson, of Honolulu, has been honored with the Col. Tom O'Matchin Sr. Award as a most outstanding college cadet at New Mexico Military Institute. The institute, known as "The West Point of the West," is nationally recognized for its outstanding academic, leadership and character development programs.

>> Jonathan-James Tadao Eno, a senior at Baldwin High school in Kahului, Maui, has been selected as one of 250 scholarship finalists to compete for a cash award from the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation in Atlanta.

>> Four students from the Lahainaluna Pacific and Asian Affairs Council Club have won the 2004 Hawaii Academic WorldQuest Competition. The team consists of Jason Bilog, Audrey Chihara, Kaylen Kadotani and Ray Velasco, who received a grand-prize trip to Washington, D.C., to compete in the World Affairs Councils of America's National Academic WorldQuest Competition.

Police, Fire, Courts


By Star-Bulletin staff


Bank robbery suspect might have hit 2 other banks

The man who robbed City Bank's Kalihi branch this past weekend is also believed to have robbed two other banks, according to police.

At 12:05 p.m. Saturday the suspect entered the City Bank at 2119 N. King St. He stood in line and presented a demand note stating he was armed with a weapon, then fled. Police said he got away with an undisclosed amount of money.

The same suspect is believed to have also robbed American Savings Bank's Liliha branch on April 5 and the Hawaii National Bank at Honolulu Airport on Aug. 1. The suspect is described as in his late 40s to early 50s, 5 feet 9 inches tall, with a heavy build, black hair and tan complexion.

Police said he was last seen wearing a baseball cap with the letter P on it, sunglasses, a beige floral aloha shirt and dark pants. Though the suspect mentioned having a weapon to bank employees, no weapon was seen.

Anyone with information about this case may call robbery Detective Derrick Kiyotoki directly at 529-3436. Anonymous calls can be made to CrimeStoppers at 955-8300 or by dialing *CRIME on a cellular phone.

Soldier killed in crash was from Houston

The U.S. Army has identified the 24-year-old Schofield Barracks soldier who was killed Saturday morning on Ala Moana in a single-car accident as Sgt. Greg Mendoza, of Houston.

Three other soldiers were passengers in the car. All of the soldiers are assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2nd Battalion, 25th Aviation Regiment.

Police seeking 2 men who shot park dweller

Police are looking for two male suspects in the shooting of a 51-year-old homeless man at Ala Moana Beach Park late Sunday night.

Police said the victim was approached sometime before 11 p.m. by the suspects, who were allegedly trying to sell drugs to the homeless living at the park.

One of the suspects told the victim he was going to shoot him and got a handgun from a maroon van parked near the Diamond Head concession stand, police said.

One of the suspects approached the victim and shot him in the abdomen prior to 11:12 p.m. Both suspects then fled in the van, police said.

The victim walked into the park and collapsed, police said. He was taken to the Queen's Medical Center in critical condition.


Missing soldier found drunk at nearby school

Honolulu Fire Department officials said a Schofield Barracks soldier whom they had been searching for since before dawn yesterday was found drunk at Sunset Elementary School.

Friends of the 22-year-old man said they last saw him sometime after 2 a.m. when he went down to the water at Waimea Bay alone. When he failed to return, they called 911.


[The Courts]

Suspect in ticket scam enters not-guilty plea

A 55-year-old man who allegedly operated a Hawaiian Airlines ticket scam pleaded not guilty yesterday in Circuit Court to seven counts of second-degree theft.

Wayne T. Abe made his plea during a videoconference from the Oahu Community Correction Center where he is being held on $35,000 bail.

If convicted, he faces five years in prison on each count.

Police believe victims lost at least $200,000. That number could increase as more victims step forward.

City Deputy Prosecutor Randy Lee told Judge Richard Perkins yesterday that he wanted to increase Abe's bail to $100,000 because "he poses a danger to the community and is a flight risk."

Lee said Abe has "Middle Eastern dealings, so we have reason to believe he might leave." Lee did not elaborate.

Since Abe was not physically in the courtroom, a hearing could not be held. One is scheduled for Thursday.

Suspect in foiled rape allegedly confessed

A 20-year-old man pleaded not guilty yesterday in Circuit Court for allegedly trying to kidnap and rape a female jogger near Kapiolani Park the evening of April 6.

Robert Allen O'Neal pleaded by videoconference from the Oahu Community Correctional Center where he is being held on $100,000 bail.

He is charged with kidnapping and first-degree attempted sexual assault. If convicted, he faces 20 years on each charge.

O'Neal, who was indicted last Tuesday, told police he had been "obsessing and planning" the attack for more than a month.

According to court documents, Honolulu police officer Chris Kim allegedly witnessed a man grabbing a woman from behind about 50 yards away. As the man tried to pull the woman away from the lighted sidewalk, the two struggled until the woman was able to break away. The man fled into the dark park. Kim chased on his all-terrain vehicle and arrested him.


Honolulu Police Department Crimestoppers

E-mail to City Desk


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