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March 21, 2024 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 5:33 PM :: 1957 Views

Class of 2024 high school graduation ceremonies scheduled

Allowing smaller lots and homes would benefit families, promote affordability

Kaneshiro Defense: Framing up People at the behest of campaign Contributors is just ‘politics as usual’

HNN: … This was the first chance for bystanders to hear the defense team’s strategy. They described the evidence as politics as usual — and not a bribery conspiracy.

(IDEA: Prove this is just ‘politics as usual’ by providing a list of all the other people you framed up at the behest of other campaign contributors.)

Kaneshiro and construction executive Dennis Mitsunaga are the lead defendants in the alleged bribery conspiracy.

Prosecutors say Mitsunaga and other executives at the high-profile firm paid Kaneshiro campaign contributions in return for the prosecution of a former Mitsunaga employee….

The case is being heard by Judge Timothy Burgess, former chief judge of the U.S. District Court in Alaska, because of an alleged threat against the Chief Judge Michael Seabright. A probe into that threat is ongoing….

Both sides said Mitsunaga asked then-Councilmember Ann Kobayashi to arrange a meeting for him with Kaneshiro, where Mitsunaga asked Kaneshiro to investigate Mau and followed up the meeting by directing more than $48,000 in campaign contributions to Kaneshiro over the next year.

A key part of the defense is the timeline of events.

Special U.S. Attorney Michael Wheat pointed out that the criminal case against Mau had been rejected by police and Kaneshiro’s own deputies, who suggested the case was weak and pursued because of the contributions….

read … Opening statements in bribery trial offer insight into Kaneshiro’s defense strategy

SB2768: Carbon Credit Scams Coming to Hawaii

HPR: … Senate Bill 2768 would require the Hawaiʻi State Energy Office to develop a clean fuel standard that reduces the allowable carbon intensity of fuel to at least 10% below 2019 levels by 2035 and at least 50% below 2019 levels by 2045.

That can be achieved one of two ways — either by using a fuel that's less carbon-intense, like gas or diesel made from biomass, or by purchasing a credit from a clean fuel producer (brokerage) ….

"About 3% of our cars are zero emission or electrified in Hawaiʻi," Mikulina said. "And that needs to be much higher."…

read … Would a clean fuel standard help Hawaiʻi reduce transportation emissions?

From Hawaii To Texas And Back: How Geanna Bradley Ended Up With The Couple Accused Of Killing Her

CB: … Geanna's father said he reported she'd been beaten by her foster mother, but the state kept her in the home and returned her there after she was inexplicably taken from another relative who wanted to adopt her….

read … From Hawaii To Texas And Back: How Geanna Bradley Ended Up With The Couple Accused Of Killing Her

Spring break tourists flocking to Hawaii, but hotel occupancy remains below pre-COVID levels

HNN: … Hotels have seen a boost in occupancy — between 70% to 80% — but that’s still below the 90% mark that was typical for spring break before the pandemic.

In March 2019, the Hawaii Tourism Authority says 927,000 people traveled to Hawaii.

In March of last year, the HTA counted around 882,000.

“We’re still a little bit below pre-pandemic,” said Mufi Hannemann with the Hawaii Lodging and Tourism Association. “But certainly we are showing signs that we are coming out of it in a big way.

“So we like to be 85-90% at this time of year. We are not there.”

The HTA says last month’s average room rate was $372 a day; that was down 4% from the previous February with the Maui fire recovery being a factor….

read … Spring break tourists flocking to Hawaii, but hotel occupancy remains below pre-COVID levels

HPD Investigates 2 Officers For Manslaughter In The Death Of A 77-Year-Old Criminal

CB: … Two Honolulu police officers are under investigation after a 77-year-old man (criminal) they arrested with force in late December died less than two weeks later due to complications, according to the department.

Thomas Matias died on Jan. 10 of the “combined effects” of a coronary artery disease and “acute bronchopneumonia“ due to rib fractures and blunt force trauma to the chest, according to the Honolulu Medical Examiner’s Office. The manner of death was listed as homicide.

Honolulu Police Chief Joe Logan told reporters Wednesday that Matias had been arrested by two officers with the department’s crime reduction unit on the evening of Dec. 28 near a parking area at Ala Moana Center.

The officers, who were conducting “hot spot” policing in the area to investigate vehicle break-ins and stolen cars, said they saw Matias get on a moped that had been reported stolen, Logan said. They had to use physical force during the arrest, he said. …

Darla Matias said that after his evaluation, he spent a few more hours in police custody before officers dropped him off at his apartment.

Two days later, on Dec. 30, he called his sister complaining of extreme head pain and saying he could hardly breathe. She went to his apartment and called 911, Darla Matias said.

Doctors found three rib fractures and contusion and abrasion of his scalp, according to a medical report.

The report says he was complaining of “chest, rib and neck pain after getting pulled of (sic) a bike by HPD.”

He was prescribed pain medication, instructed on precautions and discharged, according to the report.

He was found dead in his apartment on Jan. 10, police said. …

“He wasn’t a law abiding citizen, let’s put it that way,” she said….

read ... HPD Investigates 2 Officers For Manslaughter In The Death Of A 77-Year-Old They Arrested

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