Hawaii News

Firm disputes FCC’s findings of misconduct

HONOLULU (AP) — A telecommunications provider in Hawaii is denying claims by the federal government that it received more than $26 million in overpayments of federal subsidies over a decade. The Washington, D.C., law firm Venable LLP filed a petition this month on behalf of Sandwich Isles ...

Court appoints representative for boy presumed dead

HILO (AP) — A court-appointed representative will determine whether there are grounds for a civil suit on behalf of the estate of a boy whose mother recently pleaded guilty to manslaughter in his death. A judge appointed private investigator Stephen W. Lane and ordered the child welfare ...

FBI serves warrant at prosecuting attorney’s office

By JENNIFER SINCO KELLEHER The Associated Press HONOLULU — An FBI raid on the Honolulu prosecuting attorney’s office is the latest action in a growing corruption scandal involving the chief of police and his prosecutor wife. FBI agents served a search warrant at the downtown Honolulu ...

State / In Brief

The Associated Press Ex-officer gets 10 years for sex assault HONOLULU — A former Honolulu police officer has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for sexually assaulting a 14-year-old girl. Jessie Laconsay pleaded no contest to six sexual assault counts in November. Prosecutors said that ...

State public employees’ pension shortfall grows to more than $12 billion

HONOLULU (AP) — The shortfall in Hawaii’s public employees’ pension fund has grown to more than $12 billion, meaning taxpayers could have to pay an additional $385 million a year to make up for the budget gap. The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reports that a study released this week by an ...

Island Air getting bigger, faster plane

By AUDREY McAVOY The Associated Press HONOLULU — Island Air plans to start flying a faster, larger plane within Hawaii, putting it in a position to grab a bigger piece of the interisland market. Performers dancing hula and playing Hawaiian music celebrated the arrival of the company’s ...

3 men face charges in shooting

HONOLULU (AP) — Three men are facing charges in a Christmas Day shooting that killed a 20-year-old. A 25-year-old man was arrested Saturday on suspicion of threatening a witness to the shooting of Stevie Feliciano. Police said that an argument prompted a shooting at the parking garage of a ...

Honolulu police chief to retire amid cloud of federal probe

Kealoha agreed to ‘gracefully retire’ to save department the embarrassment By JENNIFER SINCO KELLEHER The Associated Press HONOLULU — Honolulu Police Chief Louis Kealoha on Friday agreed to retire amid a federal investigation of civil rights abuses and corruption. Police Commission ...

New trustee foiled Native Hawaiian election

By JENNIFER SINCO KELLEHER The Associated Press HONOLULU — The man who thwarted an effort to hold an election for Native Hawaiians is the newest trustee of the public agency that provided $2.6 million for the failed self-governance vote. Kelii Akina was elected in November as an at-large ...

Man gets probation for biting flight attendant

HONOLULU (AP) — A man accused of biting a Hawaiian Airlines flight attendant during a July flight from American Samoa to Hawaii was sentenced to three years of probation Thursday for interfering with a flight crew. Aumoeualogo Agaaoa Togia pleaded guilty in September in exchange for ...

Gov. Ige appoints Chris Todd to replace the late Rep. Clift Tsuji

HONOLULU (AP) — Hawaii Gov. David Ige has appointed Hilo resident Chris Todd to replace the late Rep. Clift Tsuji in the state House. Todd said in a statement Thursday he’s grateful for the opportunity and will keep an open door and mind. Todd is a distribution manager for Hawaii Paper ...

Oahu patient receives Colorado kidney

HONOLULU (AP) — A nurse working in a Honolulu pediatrician’s office has helped the mother of one of her young patients get a kidney transplant from a donor in Colorado. Cherish Matautia, 25, became the first trans-Pacific kidney transplant patient at Honolulu’s Queen Medical Center last ...

Union, state reach agreement on teachers’ education travel

HONOLULU (AP) — A teachers union has reached an agreement with the state’s Ethics Commission on new guidelines for teachers who receive free travel to serve as chaperones on school-related trips. The Hawaii State Teachers Association, which represents 13,500 teachers, announced Tuesday it ...

Program to boost engineering students

HONOLULU (AP) — A new public school initiative will allow Hawaii students interested in engineering careers get on an early pathway to acceptance at a university engineering program. The state Department of Education is partnering with the University of Hawaii to create a “college-focused ...

Hawaii residents renew push for stricter pesticide rules

By CATHY BUSSEWITZ The Associated Press HONOLULU — Hawaii residents concerned about pesticide use by major agriculture companies on the islands are planning a push to strengthen regulation over chemicals they fear harm their health. The divisive issue has drawn thousands to the Legislature ...

Commission holds closed session over police chief probe

By JENNIFER SINCO KELLEHER The Associated Press HONOLULU — The Honolulu Police Commission met behind closed doors Wednesday to discuss the status of Chief Louis Kealoha, who surrendered his gun and badge and went on paid leave after being notified he’s the target of a federal ...

State/In Brief

The Associated Press Woman killed in fireworks explosion HONOLULU — A fireworks explosion at a large New Year’s Eve gathering on Oahu has left one woman dead and a man critically injured, authorities said. The pair had been lighting illegal fireworks at the gathering when the explosion ...

Man charged with wife’s death in Tonga wants his cash back

By JENNIFER SINCO KELLEHER The Associated Press HONOLULU — A U.S. citizen detained in Honolulu and facing extradition to Tonga, where he’s accused of beating his wife to death, has asked the U.S. government to return cash he had amassed from other countries including Canada and New ...

Hawaii County halts hiring while updating process

KAILUA-KONA (AP) — Hawaii County Mayor Harry Kim has instituted a hiring freeze so that county departments can revamp their procedures for selecting job candidates. West Hawaii Today reports that Kim said Wednesday that until each department’s process of hiring is approved by his office, ...

State In Brief

3 native birds found dead after release HONOLULU — Less than a month after five of Hawaii’s last remaining native crow species were reintroduced to the wild, conservationists say three of the birds have been found dead and two others have been placed back in captivity. The alala, which ...