Man charged with attempted murder held without bail

Caones-Paahana accused of assault of off-duty officer

WAILUKU — Citing a defendant’s extensive criminal history and the “viciousness” of an assault on an off-duty police officer, a judge ordered that a Wailuku man be held without bail on a charge of attempted murder.

Tomasi Caones-Paahana, 28, was arrested at midmorning Friday, several hours after the 12:54 a.m. beating at Kihei Kalama Village that left the officer hospitalized with life-threatening injuries, police said.

During Caones-Paahana’s initial appearance Monday in Wailuku District Court, Deputy Prosecutor Brant Yoshimoto asked for bail to continue at $500,000.

He said the victim was on the ground and being punched by another man when Caones-Paahana came up and punched the victim in the head, “then stomped on his head, rendering him unconscious for seven minutes.”

“The stomping on his head was so hard that in the pictures, even when the victim was in the hospital, you can still see the shoe imprint on his head,” Yoshimoto said.

He said the victim suffered fractures to his head and internal brain bleeding.

According to court records, Caones-Paahana has prior convictions for first-degree assault on a law enforcement officer, two counts of second-degree burglary, two counts of second-degree theft, third-degree promotion of a dangerous drug, two counts of third-degree theft, two counts of unauthorized entry into a motor vehicle and third-degree assault.

“The state is arguing that this defendant is a danger to society, given his violent convictions in the past and the circumstances of the current alleged case,” Yoshimoto said.

Caones-Paahana asked for his bail to be reduced to $100,000.

Deputy Public Defender Gustavo Gonzalez said that based on a declaration to support the charge, there were “multiple people that attacked the victim.”

In ordering that Caones-Paahana be held without bail, Judge Blaine Kobayashi said that “the pure viciousness and callousness that the defendant allegedly engaged in with regard to a completely defenseless human being is pretty much beyond comprehension for this court.”

Kobayashi added that “the court doesn’t believe any condition or combination of conditions is going to reasonably assure the appearance of the defendant.”

A preliminary hearing was scheduled Wednesday for Caones-Paahana, who is charged with attempted second-degree murder.

Court records show that in August 2013, Caones-Paahana was sentenced to five-year prison terms, to be served at the same time, in two criminal cases. In one case, Caones-Paahana was convicted of burglarizing Maui Master Jewelers in Makawao and stealing more than $100,000 in jewelry. He also was convicted of burglarizing a Haiku home and of stealing copper from Alpha Electric.

When he was arrested in February 2013, police officers reported Caones-Paahana punched one officer in the ribs and elbowed another officer in the face.

* Lila Fujimoto can be reached at lfujimoto@mauinews.com.


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