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Hana men indicted in assault on campers

WAILUKU — Two Hana men have been indicted on charges alleging they assaulted a visitor who was camping in Hana with his girlfriend and two children in July.

James Pu, 31, and Elijah Koi Gold, 30, were arraigned Wednesday in 2nd Circuit Court.

They pleaded not guilty to charges of first-degree assault, first-degree criminal property damage, first-degree unauthorized entry into a motor vehicle, two counts of second-degree terroristic threatening, third-degree assault, two counts of second-degree endangering the welfare of a minor and harassment.

Police were flagged down at 11:19 p.m. July 21 by the victim, who reported he was approached by three men who told him he wasn’t allowed to camp there and began to assault him, according to police. A man who saw the assault flashed his lights and honked his horn before the three men approached and punched him and damaged his vehicle, police said.

Pu, Gold and a third suspect were arrested and released pending further investigation.

After a grand jury indictment against the three was returned Oct. 14, Pu and Gold posted bail bonds of $31,000 each to be released, court records show. The third suspect hasn’t been arraigned in the case, according to court records.

If convicted of the first-degree assault charge, Pu and Gold could face extended sentencing under a hate crime provision.

Pretrial conferences for Pu and Gold are set for Dec. 9.