Katherine Kealoha's Boyfriend's Attorney's Law License Suspended
Kea'au Beach Park Meth Camp: Luxury Cars, Boats, and Jet Skis Bulldozed
Wind Industry Poised for Decline?
HSTA wins award for tobacco control efforts
Is Honolulu’s mayor under federal scrutiny?
ILind: …I received messages from two different people on Monday. One probably has strong political connections, as well as connections from prior federal service. The other is well connected in certain legal circles, although they are not an attorney.
Both said the same thing. Something unexpected. They said Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell has emerged as the likely target of the late-stage investigation.
…hearing it from two different sources suggests this rumor could possibly have legs.
I guess it’s time for one of the city hall reporters to put the question to Mayor Caldwell: “Have you received a target letter from the grand jury?”
read … Is Honolulu’s mayor under federal scrutiny?
Former Honolulu Police Chief Agrees To Plead Guilty To Bank Fraud—Promises to Cooperate with Investigators
SA: … Louis and Katherine Kealoha are scheduled to appear in court Tuesday to plead guilty to federal charges as part of separate plea agreements, ending a years-long prosecution that toppled one of Oahu’s most prominent power couples.
Louis Kealoha, the retired police chief, will plead to one count of bank fraud, his attorney said.
Katherine Kealoha, a former deputy prosecutor, will plead guilty to bank fraud, aggravated identity theft and “misprision” of a felony – failing to report a felony as a law enforcement officer, according to one of her attorneys.….
All three cases stemmed from a wide-ranging federal investigation into public corruption that is continuing.
As part of the plea deals, the Kealohas are agreeing to cooperate with investigators….
Really Obvious Question: Who is a bigger fish than the Police Chief?
read … Louis and Katherine Kealoha scheduled to plead guilty to federal charges Tuesday
4 truckloads of wind turbine parts delivered to Kahuku after 6 more arrests
SA: … The latest arrests bring the total to more than 100 protesters cited since the attempted blockades started late Thursday. Police arrested 55 people when the protest started late Thursday and early Friday, and 40 people more when it resumed Sunday night and early Monday….
In Kahuku, about 50 HPD officers on bicycles road up to the site from the nearby police station at about 4 a.m. to cordon off the driveway to the project site from a group of about 90 demonstrators….
The arrests took place at about 4:15 a.m., and by 4:30 a.m. AES crews had removed the driveway fencing and the trucks made their delivery.
The four turbine tower sections appear to be for one tower out of eight turbines comprising the AES project. Three blades were delivered Monday after 13 arrests in Kahuku and 27 in Kalaeloa. Four other turbine parts were delivered Friday morning after 33 arrests in Kahuku and 22 in Kalaeloa….
AES is permitted to deliver turbine parts from Sunday nights through Friday mornings between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. The company expects that it could take until Nov. 26 to deliver all the equipment….
read … wind farm protesters arrested
Opposition to wind farm is nothing new
SA: … If you think the opposition to the Kahuku wind farm started last week when scores of protesters were arrested for trying to block construction of the planned project, think again.
Kent Fonoimoana said the community has been battling the proposed wind farm for more than a decade….
Fonoimoana said he and lots of others in Kahuku have challenged the wind turbine project at every turn, attending dozens of community meetings over the years, speaking at hearings, pleading with politicians and government officials, holding petition drives, distributing flyers and marching in peaceful protest.
Despite their efforts, AES Corp., the contractor for the wind farm, won the green light to proceed and is looking to build eight 568-foot wind turbines on the slopes of Kahuku.
There are already 12 shorter turbines in the rural North Shore community of 2,300….
read … Opposition to wind farm is nothing new
Kahuku Wind Turbines May Start Falling Over
KHON: … On Friday, someone used a chainsaw to cut down a utility pole along Kamehameha Highway near Sunset beach in an attempt to block the convoy’s route.
On Sunday, just before 8 am., someone damaged bolts attached to the foundation of a Kahuku turbine.
One or more suspects were seen running into the brush area leading to Kahuku high school….
read … Police seek criminal property damage suspects for North Shore incidents
Secret UPW contract with Kaiser Maui hospitals ratified
MN: … Terms not disclosed by either union or Maui Health System ….
read … UPW contract with hospitals is ratified
DHHL may hire attorney to deal with land issues
WHT: … The Hawaiian Homes Commission took the first step Monday to hire an outside attorney to put a dollar figure on what the state owes Native Hawaiian beneficiaries for land, including the Maunakea Access Road, that was the subject of a 1995 state law….
Hawaiian Homes Commission Chairman William Aila appointed an investigative committee including himself, West Hawaii Commissioner David Kaapu, Kauai Commissioner and Oahu Commissioner Pauline Namuo. The action, announced in the agenda, didn’t require commission action. The committee is slated to begin its work Wednesday.
The committee is charged with reviewing selection criteria and other issues relating to hiring a private counsel focused on ensuring beneficiaries receive compensation in land or money for outstanding claims surrounding 1,328 acres, including 346 acres of roads, that were supposed to be resolved by Act 14 in 1995.
The Maunakea Access Road issue proved especially troublesome to scores of testifiers at a meeting Monday, several of whom used their 3 minutes for songs, chants and prayers….
read … DHHL committee to consider hiring private attorney
Plan To Award Rail’s Final Contract Reaches Point Of No Return
CB: … The private firms bidding, meanwhile, are seeking a 30-year operations and maintenance arrangement with the city to make the deal work. It’s not clear yet how Hitachi Rail Honolulu, which already has a deal to operate the system for up to 10 years, would play into the arrangement….
The award process, however, keeps getting pushed back.
Instead of HART receiving bids on Dec. 6 they’re now expected at the end of January. The bidders say they need more time, and it’s possible that schedule could get pushed back even further, Robbins said last week.
At this stage of the procurement, HART must pare down to no more than three parties bidding for the contract to build the final 4.1 miles of elevated concrete-and-steel track and eight stations into town, as well as a transit center and a 1,600-space parking facility in Pearl City.
HART, under state procurement law, can’t confirm how many finalists there are. But Robbins has said there are at least two….
The finalists have asked more than 600 design- and construction-related questions, seeking more details on acceptable rail-column locations and available sites for them to work among all the utility-relocation that has to happen in town, Robbins said.
Hitachi, which is creating the transit line’s signaling system and driverless trains, also has to answer questions “but they’re a little bit behind our timeline to be frank,” Robbins told the HART board last week….
(Hitachi has a conflict of interest on this.)
read … Plan To Award Rail’s Final Contract Reaches Point Of No Return
Will Council Vote on HART P3?
KHON: …Heidi Tsuneyoshi introduced a resolution seeking council approval prior to the rail authority executing any contract with a private partner to build the final leg of rail and operate the system.
“The city is going to be the one paying, and ultimately the taxpayers, for the next 30 years for the operation and maintenance,” said Tsuneyoshi. So we really should know what we’re signing onto before that happens.”
HART is currently seeking bids from what it calls P-3 or public-private partner developers for the city-center portion of rail, plus the rights to run the train.
Another resolution introduced by Tsuneyoshi demands public hearings prior to a city-state land swap related to the parcel where the rail operation center is built.
As always investigating previously reported, the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands still holds the title to the land and was supposed to get equally valued land elsewhere…..
HPR: Honolulu Councilmember Calls For More Transparency From Rail Project
read ... Rail project discussed at City Council Tuesday
Community group heads to court to fight Ala Wai flood project
HNN: … A judge on Monday listened to opening statements and witness testimony for a motion seeking a preliminary injunction to stop the Ala Wai flood project….
The community group Protect Our Ala Wai Watersheds filed a lawsuit against the project last month.
A final Environmental Impact Statement has yet to be accepted by the state or the city. The plaintiff’s attorney said officials are making decisions without the benefit of that completed document….
Deputy Attorney General David Day told the court that the money raised would be held in escrow until the acceptance of a final EIS or possible supplemental EIS….
The hearing is scheduled to continue on Tuesday….
read … Community group heads to court to fight Ala Wai flood project
Tae Kim for Prosecutor: Reform Rule 48
TK: … Every criminal law practice is governed by the Hawaii Rules of Penal Procedure (HRPP). As a prosecutor, I will revisit the HRPP and advocate for changes and amendments to some of the HRPP.
FACT: More criminal offenses get dismissed for violation of Rule 48 of HRPP than for any other reasons. Rule 48 of HRPP states that the "accused must be granted trial within 6 months of arrest and posting bail, or after a complaint is filed."
The Rule 48 of HRPP was adopted to reflect the U.S. and Hawaii State Constitution’s protection of accused’s rights to a speedy trial. However, both U.S. and Hawaii Constitution does not specify any time period for prosecution, just that the accused has a right to “speedy” trial. The 6 months rule as stated in the Rule 48 of HRPP has been in place for more than 40 years. With the change in times, increase in population, and an increase in a number of offenses, shouldn’t we revisit the 6 months rule? Where’s the accountability and responsible behavior when cases are summarily dismissed?
read … Tae Kim for Prosecutor
Deputy Public Defender launches campaign for Honolulu Prosecutor—Announces Plan to Lets Lots and Lots of Criminals Back onto the Streets
KHON: … “I am running for Prosecutor because I have seen firsthand how our criminal justice system is failing the people of Hawaiʻi and wasting taxpayer dollars. I am the first deputy public defender to run for Honolulu Prosecutor. I know how broken our criminal justice system is and I know how to fix it.”
Jacquie understands the struggles a family endures when a loved one suffers from a mental health or substance use disorder. Through her personal experiences and by analyzing the research and data, she knows that addressing the root causes of crime strengthens communities and makes us safer.
“We need to focus on prosecuting corruption and violent crimes, while diverting low-level offenders into treatment. We need to reduce our jail and prison population through bail reform and community-based treatment, give our children the resources they need to succeed, and bring the highest ethical standards to the Office of the Prosecuting Attorney.” …
CB: Deputy public defender Jacquelyn Esser makes it official while attorney Tae Kim files campaign paperwork.
read … Deputy Public Defender launches campaign for Honolulu Prosecutor
Soft on Crime: How a Meth Dealer Walks
KGI: … a Fifth Circuit judge ruled that Kauai Police officers did not have probable cause to search a Kekaha residence where they allegedly found marijuana, crystal methamphetamine, drug paraphernalia and firearms that formed the basis for criminal charges against Shawn Parraga….
Police got the warrant and returned to the home around 8 p.m. Inside, they found weed and crystal meth — about a half ounce of each — a loaded pistol in a purse, a shotgun on a bed, and $6,023 in cash, according to KPD records logging the seized property.
County prosecutors brought charges against Parraga about a week later, adding two counts of promoting a dangerous drug and four counts of possession of prohibited weapons to the trespassing charge he was initially arrested for.
He could face decades in jail if convicted on all counts, but after last week’s court hearing, the trespassing charge may be the only one that sticks….
read … Soft on Crime
Soft on Crime: Child Molester gets Second Chance so he Takes it
WHT: … A motion to revoke probation was granted on Monday for a Ka’u man indicted by a Kona grand jury for a 2017 sexual assault of a minor while serving an intermittent prison sentence for similar charges dating back to 2011.
Ryan Queja pleaded guilty in February 2011 to first-degree sexual assault, second-degree sexual assault, two counts of third-degree sexual assault and third-degree attempted sexual assault. He was sentenced to 24 months incarceration to be served intermittently with a minimum of three months each year and 900 hours of community service.
read … Probation for Child Molester