Man accused of terrorizing motorists on Tantalus may undergo court-ordered mental exam

Martin Boegel
Martin Boegel

By Minna Sugimoto - bio | email

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The attorney for a man accused of terrorizing motorists on Tantalus Drive in May told an Oahu judge on Monday that he may be filing a motion for a court-ordered mental evaluation of his client.

Martin Boegel, 27, was scheduled to change his not guilty pleas in two criminal cases Monday and move towards sentencing.

"Are you ready to proceed?" Richard Pollack, Circuit Court judge, asked.

"No, your honor," Steven Nichols, deputy public defender, replied. "We would be asking to continue the change of plea. We may be filing a three-panel evaluation."

Nichols says he's considering asking the court to appoint a panel of three doctors to determine Boegel's mental state at the time of his alleged offenses.

In one case, the defendant is accused of impersonating a law enforcement officer and trespassing on the University of Hawaii Manoa campus.

The following week, investigators say he went to a lookout on Tantalus Drive, poured gasoline on the roadway and threatened motorists with a replica handgun. An off-duty FBI agent, who happened to be in the area, shot the suspect multiple times.

In an interview with Hawaii News Now following the Tantalus incident, Boegel said getting an officer to shoot him was his plan.

"My intention was never, ever to threaten or intimidate anybody else," he said. "I wanted to commit suicide."

FBI spokesperson Tom Simon says the agency's review of the shooting continues.

The judge continued the plea hearing until Thursday to give the prosecution and the defense time to consider the mental exam request.

"The state had anticipated going forward with the change of plea," Paul Mow, deputy prosecutor, said. "That was its understanding. That is all on the defense that they've made this request."