Kidnapping Suspect Indicted by Grand Jury in East Hawaiʻi
A grand jury indicted a Hilo man this morning for kidnapping a 15-year-old girl.
Duncan Kealoha Mahi was indicted in 3rd Circuit Court on these charges: two counts of kidnapping, three counts of terroristic threatening, first-degree robbery, two counts of methamphetamine trafficking and four counts of sexual assault.
With the filing of the indictment, a bench warrant has been ordered. Mahi is currently in custody and being held on more than $2 million bail. Once the court issues the warrant, an arraignment and plea hearing will be scheduled in circuit court.
Charges stem from an incident on Friday, where Mahi is accused of robbing two teenagers at knifepoint at Anaehoʻomalu Bay in West Hawaiʻi. According to court documents, Mahi forced the girl to tie up her teen boyfriend before he took her to his East Hawaiʻi home.
The 15-year-old girl escaped from Mahi nearly 24 hours later after convincing the 52-year-old to take her to get food at Cafe Pesto in Hilo.
On Tuesday, Mahi was initially charged in District Court. On Wednesday, he appeared in Kona District Court for a preliminary hearing attended by several family members and friends of the victim.
Prior to the proceedings, deputy prosecuting attorney Kauanoe Jackson requested the hearing be continued because several key material witnesses were unavailable. District Court Judge Kimberly Taniyama instructed the hearing to continue as planned with the witnesses available.
All witnesses Wednesday were employees of the Hawaiʻi Police Department. Their testimonies centered around their response to a 911 call on Friday afternoon from the Waikōloa area.
Sgt. Bradden Kimura testified dispatchers received a 911 call from one of the victims at the beach.
“He was hysterical on the phone,” Kimura testified, adding the teen told dispatchers he’d been robbed at knifepoint and his girlfriend was missing.
When he arrived on scene, Kimura said the teenager had blue painter’s tape on his wrists and ankles, and entangled in his hair.
Mary Midkiff, HPD evidence specialist, testified she concentrated her efforts at a day campsite, about a quarter mile south of Lava Lava Beach Club. She told the court she observed an umbrella, towels, a black backpack, a couple of drink bottles and snacks.
Facing the campsite, Midkiff said it was a way up from the shoreline, nestled by Keawe trees in the shade, and looked private.
Matthew Silva, court-appointed counsel for Mahi, questioned Midkiff on whether any items recovered had been tested for fingerprints or DNA. The evidence specialist testified nothing had been tested at this time.
Detective Blaine Matsui told the court he conducted follow-ups at Waikōloa’s King’s Shops and Queen’s Marketplace, a short drive from the beach. He said video surveillance recovered Tuesday showed images of the suspect’s vehicle entering and leaving the area.
After all the state’s witnesses took the stand, Silva, Mahi’s attorney, told the court none of them provided substantive testimony in the case and no one identified the suspect.
Judge Taniyama continued the hearing until tomorrow at 2:30 p.m.