Trial set in death of Longs manager

A Nov. 4 trial has been set for a Kihei man charged with manslaughter in the death of a Longs Drugs Store manager, after he was found mentally fit to proceed in the case.

The defense and prosecution agreed to Peter Schmidt’s fitness after reports from three court-appointed psychiatrists or psychologists who examined him.

Schmidt, 29, is charged with manslaughter and first-degree robbery in connection with the death of Jamie Hozaki, manager of the Kihei Longs.

Hozaki and another employee had followed Schmidt after he left the store without paying for a 30-pack of beer at about 5:30 a.m. Dec. 23, according to police.

Schmidt was in the driver’s seat of a white Ford sedan and Hozaki had opened the driver’s door when Schmidt suddenly reversed out of a parking stall, throwing Hozaki to the ground, according to witnesses.

After being admitted to Maui Memorial Medical Center with a severe brain injury, the 61-year-old Hozaki was pronounced dead Dec. 28.

Police arrested Schmidt, 29, the next day. He has been held at the Maui Community Correctional Center in lieu of $50,000 bail.

Schmidt was found mentally fit to proceed in the case June 13 after the doctors’ reports were received by the court.