• Saito was supplied with cash, fake IDs and cellphones

    Hawaii State Hospital escapee Randall Saito fled hospital grounds after he opened a four-digit combination locked gate that led to the Windward Community College campus and his temporary freedom, according to a court document.
    When deputy sheriffs nabbed Saito in Stockton, Calif., on Nov. 15, he had over $6,000 in cash, two fake driver’s licenses and two smartphones.
    Details of his escape were revealed in court documents the state filed Thursday, asking to increase Saito’s bail &ldqu
  • Union, Kyo-ya to resume negotiations next week

    Unite Here Local 5, which represents 2,700 striking hotel workers in Hawaii, and Kyo-ya Hotels & Resorts will return to the bargaining table next week.
    Local 5 announced Friday that it is slated to resume bargaining with Kyo-ya on Friday and Oct. 27. That means that the strike likely will drag on for another week. The strike began Oct. 8 when negotiations between Local 5 and Kyo-ya, which owns the Marriott-managed Sheraton Waikiki, Royal Hawaiian Hotel, Westin Moana Surfrider, Sheraton Princ
  • Registered sex offender indicted in assault of minor

    A 55-year-old registered sex offender in Hawaii has been indicted on multiple counts of sexual assault involving a minor.
    An Oahu grand jury returned an indictment Wednesday charging James Buddy Pineda with two counts of first-degree sexual assault involving a person who is at least 14 years old but younger than 16 years old and six counts of third-degree sexual assault.
    Pineda turned himself in at the Honolulu Police Department’s Alapai headquarters Thursday afternoon after the grand jury
  • Pilots job fair, future aviators forum set in Waikiki

    The Future & Active Pilot Advisors consulting company will be holding a pilot job fair and future pilot forum on Nov. 10 at the Alohilani Resort Waikiki Beach.
    The FAPA job fair will be from 9 a.m. to noon at 2490 Kalakaua Ave. and is seeking qualified pilots with more than 250 hours. They should register at FAPA.aero/Jobs.
    Airlines recruiting include Air Wisconsin, Compass Airlines, Empire Airlines, Envoy Air, ExpressJet Airlines, Gama Aviation Signature/Wheels Up, Mesa Airlines, Northern A
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  • Ocean Watch: Indifference of unexpected visitor sparks delight

    QUEENSLAND, Australia >> Craig and I are back aboard our 37-foot ketch, Honu, in Townsville’s charming Breakwater Marina. We plan to sail to some new places in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, a thrilling prospect. But as we shop for groceries, get gas for the outboard and do all the other chores necessary to set sail, I’m still aglow over a marine animal thrill I had in Hawaii the day before we left.
    Craig and our Kailua friends had decided to paddle their stand-ups to the
  • Legionnaires’ disease case confirmed at Kaiser Moanalua

    A patient at Kaiser Permanente’s Moanalua Medical Center has tested positive for Legionella bacteria, the first reported case of the disease since an outbreak earlier in the year that left one person dead.
    State Department of Health spokeswoman Janice Okubo said the case was reported to the department Tuesday and was determined to have originated within the hospital. She said the department has been working closely with the medical facility on appropriate follow-up measures.
    “Our sta
  • HPD body-cam footage shows tense moments before fatal shooting

    Newly released body-worn camera footage of the Oct. 7 shooting of a 39-year-old Honolulu man reveals that while he was talking with Honolulu police standing in front of him, another three officers, hidden from view, rushed him from behind.
    That’s when Tison Dinney quickly reacted, in an apparent attempt to defend himself, by picking up a pair of garden shears off the ground.
    A second officer, with four years of service, immediately fired five shots, fatally injuring Dinney outside the Depa
  • How to shop for Medicare health and drug plans

    When you shop for a new car or truck, you don’t just buy the first one you see, do you?
    Probably not. You shop around, looking for the best deal you can get on a vehicle that fits your driving needs as well as your pocketbook.
    Well, it’s the time of year when you can shop for a Medicare health or drug plan.
    Medicare’s open enrollment period began Monday and runs through Dec. 7.
    If you have Original Medicare, meaning that you can choose any doctor or hospital that accepts Medica
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  • Genki Sushi reaches $4.5M settlement over hepatitis outbreak

    Genki Sushi, the source of a hepatitis A outbreak in 2016, has reached a preliminary settlement of up to$4.5 million for people who were secondarily exposed to the virus linked to tainted scallops sold at Hawaii restaurants.
    Those who were exposed to the highly contagious virus, which causes liver infection, but did not become sick are entitled to receive up to $350, $250 or $150, according to a news release issued Friday by Marler Clark, a Seattle-based law firm specializing in litigation invol
  • Big Island hotels see worst downturn since 2008

    Volcanic eruptions, natural disastersand canceled flights, oh my!
    The eruptive hiatus at Kilauea is continuing, and Hurricane Lane and Tropical Storm Olivia weren’t as menacing as forecast, but canceled flights and other head winds from these events caused Hawaii island in September to experience its worst downturn since the Great Recession.
    In September, Hawaii island hotels reported that occupancy dipped 8.9 percentage points to 58.7 percent, according to STR, a data and analytics specia
  • Hawaii Supreme Court rules out constitutional amendment ballot question

    The Hawaii Supreme Court on Friday invalidated a question on general election ballots asking voters whether they want to amend the Hawaii Constitution to allow the state to tax property in support of public education.
    Ruling in favor of Hawaii’s four counties, the court unanimously found that the wording of the question wasn’t sufficiently clear. Hawaii law requires that the language of a proposed constitutional amendment be “neither misleading or deceptive.”
    With early v
  • Evaluation of HART CEO Andrew Robbins begins

    A Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation committee Friday began discussing a one-year evaluation for Executive Director Andrew Robbins.
    After meeting behind closed doors for about an hour, the HART Human Resources Committee will take up the subject again at its Oct. 31 meeting.
    Hoyt Zia, Human Resources Committee chairman, said his group is hoping to complete its work and recommend an action to the full HART board in time for its Nov. 15 meeting, although he did not rule out that it could t
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  • Police seeking witnesses in Tantalus murder

    Honolulu police and CrimeStoppers are asking for the public’s help in locating witnesses in the murder of 22-year-old Mackfik Kolman.
    Police said a passerby found Kolman unresponsive in the bushes near the 3800 block of Tantalus Drive at about 2:30 p.m. Sunday. An Emergency Medical Services crew responded and pronounced him dead.
    Police initially opened an unattended death case, but reclassified the case to a second-degree murder investigation on Monday after suspicious injuries were found
  • Hawaii County Fire Department warns of phone scam soliciting donations

    The Hawaii County Fire Department sent out a public alert today warning of a telephone scam soliciting donations.
    The Fire Department does not engage in the solicitation of monetary donations,” said Fire Chief Darren Rosario said in a news release. “Any member of the public receiving such calls should disregard the solicitation, and report it the police.”
    To report suspected telephone scams, call the Hawaii Police Department’s non-emergency number at 935-3311.
  • Snow dusts Big Isle summits as threat of heavy rain and thunderstorms prompts flash flood watch

    A light dusting of snow appeared on the summits of Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa on Friday morning as a result of thunderstorms, while a flash flood watch remains in effect for Hawaii island through Saturday afternoon.
    National Weather Service officials said an approaching upper-level disturbance will result in spotty afternoon showers, some of them heavy, from Kauai and Maui this afternoon. Deeper moisture in place over Hawaii island is also expected to bring showers and thunderstorms this afternoon,
  • Hilo man dies in accident while cutting down tree

    A man died in a tree-cutting accident Thursday, the Hawaii Fire Department reported.
    Fire crews arrived at 5:20 p.m. at 277 Kaiulani Street in Hilo where the found an unresponsive 46-year-old man suspended with cables approximately 30 feet above the ground.
    According to witnesses, the victim was cutting the tree before it struck him. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
    The private property where the accident happened is overgrown with vegetation and trees.
    This case has been turned over to the
  • Union lodges more unfair-labor charges against Kyo-ya hotels

    Unite Here Local 5, the union representing 2,700 striking hotel workers on Oahu and Maui, accused Kyo-ya Hotels & Resorts on Thursday of more unfair labor practices at its Marriott-managed hotels.
    The strike began Oct. 8 when negotiations between Local 5 and Kyo-ya, which owns the Sheraton Waikiki, Royal Hawaiian Hotel, Westin Moana Surfrider, Sheraton Princess Kaiulani and Sheraton Maui, reached an impasse.
    Now there’s another spat. The union believes its members have a federally prot
  • Union lodges more charges unfair-labor against Kyo-ya hotels

    Unite Here Local 5, the union representing 2,700 striking hotel workers on Oahu and Maui, accused Kyo-ya Hotels & Resorts on Thursday of more unfair labor practices at its Marriott-managed hotels.
    The strike began Oct. 8 when negotiations between Local 5 and Kyo-ya, which owns the Sheraton Waikiki, Royal Hawaiian Hotel, Westin Moana Surfrider, Sheraton Princess Kaiulani and Sheraton Maui, reached an impasse.
    Now there’s another spat. The union believes its members have a federally prot
  • State installs pedestrian safety pilot project on Pali Highway

    State officials said Friday that they installed a pedestrian safety measure including signs and delineators on Pali Highway at the Wood Street crosswalk, the site of a fatal collision that claimed the life of a Nuuanu resident earlier this month.
    The “gateway in-street treatment” consists of two fluorescent yellow signs flanking both sides of the road alerting drivers to stop for pedestrians in crosswalks, along with 36-inch-tall delineators on the road for motorists to drive between
  • Rearview Mirror: Some single-proprietor micro-businesses in Hawaii thrived in plantation homes

    Many of our residents’ ancestors came to Hawaii to work on sugar or pineapple plantations. Some of them left when their contracts were up to start their own mom-and-pop stores.
    But for some there was an intermediate step — often a small store run out of their plantation home.
    Big Island resident Ken Fujii says these single proprietor micro-businesses served a vital community need but are largely forgotten. Most existed for just a few decades.
    “These small businesses existed bot
  • Propane tanks may have figured in fatal Kaimuki fire

    The investigation of the Kaimuki house fire that claimed a mother and her baby continued Thursday after the Honolulu Fire Department discovered three 20-pound, barbecue-type propane tanks in the carport.
    “It is still part of the investigation, and it still hasn’t been confirmed or ruled out that they were the cause of the fire,” HFD spokesman Capt. Scot Seguirant said. The cause of the fire remains under investigation, he said Thursday night.
    Firefighters on Wednesday morning d
  • Lee Cataluna: What it’s like when 1 job isn’t enough

    Striking hotel workers have brought to light a powerful challenge to Hawaii: the idea that one job should be enough in a place where many people work second jobs and have done so for decades, often to get ahead financially or to do something they love.
    When Local 5 workers talk about their second or third job, though, it’s not about fun money or to fulfill a passion or because the travel benefits are so good. It’s straight-up survival.
    Nerissa Acdal leaves her 2-year-old child with a
  • Kokua Line: Signs restricting beach paths put up by mistake, city says

    Question: Sunday while walking along Kahala Avenue in Honolulu, I noticed new city Department of Parks and Recreation signs at the street entrances to three beach access paths restricting these long-standing beach access pathways to “residents only.” I have been using these pathways for over 30 years and found this new development alarming.
    The beach access paths with the new signs restricting access to “residents only” were numbers 133A, 133B and 133C. The old signs said
  • Justices expected to quickly rule on ballot question

    The Hawaii Supreme Court heard oral arguments Thursday on whether to invalidate a question on the November general election ballot asking voters to give the state the power to tax investment property to support public education.
    Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald said that the court would take the matter under advisement after listening for more than an hour to arguments from attorneys for both Hawaii’s four counties and state Attorney General Russell Suzuki. The court is expecte
  • Facts of the Matter: Exoplanets come to light with help of modern tools

    For centuries astronomers speculated about whether stars other than our sun had planetary systems. The answer to that question came in 1995 with the first confirmed discovery of an exoplanet orbiting a sunlike star approximately 50 light-years away in the constellation Pegasus.
    As of Oct. 1 the Kepler space telescope and other observatories have discovered 3,851 confirmed planets in 2,871 systems, with 636 systems having more than one planet. The nearest is a mere 4.2 light-years distant.
    In Aug
  • Early walk-in voting begins Tuesday

    Beginning Tuesday, registered voters can visit any early walk-in voting location within their county to cast ballots in the general election. A list of locations can be found on the Office of Election’s website. Early walk-in locations are open through Nov. 3.
    Hawaii residents also may register to vote at any early walk-in voting location in their county, as well as on Election Day, Nov. 6, at their assigned polling place. To register to vote, you must be a U.S. citizen, a Hawaii resident
  • Council bill would address lengthy building permit times

    A bill requiring the city to process less complicated building permits within 60 days won preliminary approval from a City Council committee Thursday after a parade of builders, contractors, engineers and architects aired complaints about how the delays are hurting their businesses.
    Under Bill 64, introduced by Council Chairman Ernie Martin, the Department of Planning and Permitting would be required to process applications for one- and two-family dwellings within 60 days of receiving them.
    Befo
  • 4 Hilo women accused of drug sales freed on bond

    A federal judge Thursday ordered the release on a $25,000 signature bond of four Hilo women accused of illegally obtaining and then selling powerful painkillers and other prescription drugs.
    The Hilo doctor who wrote the prescriptions for the drugs was scheduled to appear in U.S. District Court this afternoon to see whether he also will get released pending further prosecution by the government.
    Assistant Federal Public Defender Melinda Yamaga told U.S. Magistrate Judge Richard L. Puglisi on Thu
  • 30-year mortgage rates dip to 4.85%

    WASHINGTON >> Long-term U.S. mortgage rates dipped slightly this week, taking a pause after weeks of steady increases stoked by rising interest rates.
    Home borrowing rates remain at their highest levels in more than seven years, with the key 30-year rate approaching 5 percent. Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac said Thursday the rate on 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages declined to an average 4.85 percent this week from 4.90 percent last week.
    Last week’s average was the highest level for the be
  • State unemployment rate inches up to 1-year high of 2.2%

    Hawaii’s unemployment rate ticked up in September to a one-year high of 2.2 percent amid further evidence that the state’s economic growth is slowing.
    Previous signs of a slowdown have come from the state’s inflation-adjusted gross domestic product and personal income — both of which are below Hawaii’s 30-year average growth rate.
    Nonfarm payroll jobs fell by 2,500 from the previous month as the state government workforce fell by 2,600 positions, primarily due to th

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