Murder victim's family expresses outrage - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Murder victim's family expresses outrage

Kamuela Kaleikilo Kamuela Kaleikilo
Det. Deena Thoemmes Det. Deena Thoemmes
Lorreanne Kaleikilo Lorreanne Kaleikilo

By Minna Sugimoto - bio | email

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Grieving family members broke down in court, as they faced the man accused of killing their loved one on New Year's Day. Testimony at the suspect's preliminary hearing Wednesday revealed the murder victim had alcohol and two different drugs in his system.

The medical examiner who performed the autopsy says Kamuela Kaleikilo had a contact wound above his right ear, which meant the muzzle of the revolver was right up against his head. The victim's family is outraged that the suspect didn't get medical attention for him sooner, and that the dispute seemed to be over a fallen Christmas tree.

As suspected murderer Chadwick Tadly entered the courtroom under heavy security, enraged members of the victim's family had to held back. Kamuela Kaleikilo, 22, of Waimanalo was shot at close range in the head while at Tadly's apartment in Waipahu New Year's Day.

"The bullet passed through the skull, the brain, and was lodged in the left side of the scalp," Dr. Gayle Suzuki, city deputy medical examiner, testified.

The description of the injuries was more than the family could bear. Kaleikilo's aunt, who later said she wanted to strangle the suspect, was removed from the courtroom.

"Let me get him first," Noe Aguiar, victim's aunt, said. "You punk."

Detective Deena Thoemmes says Tadly confessed to the deadly shooting, but claimed it was an accident. He told investigators they were in the apartment drinking and talking story, but got into a struggle when Kaleikilo became belligerent and knocked over the Christmas tree.

"He said that he had the gun," Thoemmes testified. "He was shoving, I guess, he shoved him to the ground and he had the gun in his hand and that Kamu may have hit his hand and the gun went off."

A test of the victim's urine reportedly detected alcohol, methamphetamine and cocaine.

His family says Kaleikilo was well-loved by everyone.

"He'd give you his last shirt off his back for you if he had to," Aguiar said. "That's the kind of guy he was. He'd give you everything."

"He always had a smile on his face, every time," Lorreanne Kaleikilo, victim's aunt, said. "And every time, he always call his mom and say, 'Mom, I love you.'"

"He loved everybody," Jacquelyn Morgenstein, victim's girlfriend, said. "He never judged nobody. He had the most respect for everybody."

The suspect, meanwhile, remains in custody in lieu of $1 million bail.

The judge determined there's enough evidence to send the case to trial. Tadly is scheduled to enter a plea at his arraignment January 19th.

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