Witness in protective custody takes stand at Deguair murder trial

Witness in protective custody takes stand at Deguair murder trial
Patrick Deguair
Patrick Deguair

By Minna Sugimoto - bio | email

HONOLULU (HAWAIINEWSNOW) - Under tight security, a felon in protective custody walked into an Oahu courtroom to serve as a key witness at a murder trial Wednesday. David Teo says he saw Patrick Deguair kill a man last year.

Teo began by telling jurors about life in protective custody. He spends most of the day in a small room equipped with cable TV and a DVD player, but isn't allowed any visitors, and his phone calls are monitored and recorded.

With a security team inside the courtroom, a man emerged from the state's witness protection program to testify against a suspected killer.

"Do you swear to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth?" the court clerk asked.

"I do," the prosecution witness replied.

David Teo says he saw Patrick Deguair use a gun with a silencer to commit the crime. Deguair is accused of taking Jermaine Duckworth to the top of a cliff near Kaena Point in March 2008.

"He had his hand on Jermaine's shoulder like that and he had the gun pointed up like this," Teo said. "And then he's saying something after that and I'm looking at it going, oh, what's going on. "

Teo says the defendant shot the 24-year-old in the back of the head and sent him to the rocks below.

"When I looked and all I heard was one pack, one pack, and then I seen Pat shove him off, push him off the cliff," Teo said.

The defense says Teo is the real killer. Deguair claims the last time he saw the victim alive, he was walking up Hakimo Road with Teo.

"The question was did you ever get out of the car at Hakimo Road?" Scott Bell, deputy prosecutor, said.

"No," Teo replied.

Prosecutors say Deguair murdered Duckworth because he gave police information about a Maili home invasion that happened four months earlier.

"He said, eh, don't worry. I only trust you and Ju Young. You the only guys I trust," Teo said. "That's all he kept saying."

Teo testified he sold the gun used in Duckworth's murder for 150 bucks because Deguair told him to get rid of it. As a convicted felon, Teo will be sentenced to 10 years in prison for possessing that firearm.