In Brief | State | 3-13-14


Kamehameha Schools sued over sex abuse claims

HONOLULU — A lawsuit is alleging that a psychiatrist molested Kamehameha Schools students in the 1970s.

Honolulu attorney Michael Green is representing eight men who claim they were molested during therapy sessions with the doctor, who died in 1991.

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported Kamehameha Schools spokesman Kekoa Paulsen said officials had not reviewed the lawsuit filed Tuesday. Paulsen declined to comment but called the allegations serious.

KHON-TV reported therapy sessions took place at the doctor’s home in Manoa and at a vacation home in Waimea. Green said the doctor was a dorm adviser with access to students in their rooms.

Green told Hawaii News Now there are many other victims.

The lawsuit is possible because of a state law that temporarily suspends the statute of limitations in sex abuse cases.

Kakesako appointed agriculture deputy

HONOLULU — The state Board of Agriculture has announced the appointment of a new deputy.

Board Chairman Scott Enright said in a statement Tuesday Ken Kakesako will serve as deputy to the chairman effective immediately.

Kakesako has served as the department’s legislative coordinator for the past two years, providing written and oral testimony at the Legislature and serving as board secretary.

He has also advised on the creation of the Kauai Good Neighbor Agricultural Program.

Kakesako previously worked as a legislative administrator and budget analyst in the office of state Sen. Russell Kokubun from 2009 to 2010. He was legislative administrator in the office of state Sen. Gilbert Kahele in 2011.

Kakesako was born and raised in Manoa. He is a graduate of Harvard University.

NTSB report: Plane mostly burned after Lanai crash

LANAI CITY, Lanai — A preliminary report on a fatal Lanai plane crash said the wreckage mostly burned in a post-impact fire.

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating last month’s crash that killed the pilot and two Maui County Planning Department employees. Three other county employees were seriously injured.

The NTSB report released Wednesday said visibility was clear and that the crash left a 640-foot-long debris field.

The Piper PA-31 crashed in a former pineapple field shortly after taking off from Lanai Airport. It was bound for Kahului.

The NTSB said what remains of the airplane has been moved to a secure location for further examination.

NTSB spokesman Peter Knudson said preliminary reports contain factual details of the investigation but no analysis. Fatal crash investigations can last about one year.

Uniformed Honolulu police must hide tattoos

HONOLULU — A new Honolulu Police Department policy is requiring uniformed officers to cover up their tattoos.

Chief Louis Kealoha told KHON-TV about 20 percent of the officers have visible tattoos. He said it was a difficult decision that has generated mixed reaction.

The chief said there’s a trend among police departments nationwide to require uniformed officers to hide their tattoos.

Kealoha, who has tattoos, said the policy is about improving the department’s professional image.

Officers will have to use long-sleeved uniforms to cover arm tattoos and makeup for tattoos on their necks or hands.

The policy goes into effect July 1.

Undercover and plain-clothes officers will be exempt.

Honolulu weighs raising taxes on vacation rentals

HONOLULU — Honolulu’s city council is considering raising taxes on residential vacation rentals.

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported the measure up for first vote Wednesday would create a new tax category for homes that rent short-term rooms.

Bed and breakfasts and short-term rental vacation homes presently pay property taxes of $3.50 per $1,000 of assessed value. Hotels pay more than triple that rate.

Chairman Ernie Martin of the city council wrote the bill. He said the measure would tax short-term rentals more like a business.

Vacation rental owners say their profits already are low. They say a tax hike would drive some owners out of business and discourage owners of illegal rental operations from wanting to become legal.

By wire sources