Outburst gets murder suspect removed from court - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Outburst gets murder suspect removed from court

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

Joseph Tui -- the man accused of murdering his cell mate at the Oahu Community Correctional Center over the weekend -- strutted into court and nodded to the camera, setting the stage for the drama that was to come next.

"I just want to say that I ... I know I'm facing murder charges but I want to confess ... I also sexually assaulted an inmate," he said.

This next outburst got Tui removed from the courtroom:

"I just want to come up and tell the truth. I intended to rape his ass," he said

The 32-year-old Tui was charged with first degree murder in the killing of his 76-year-old cell mate Cyril Chung at OCCC.

Police said Chung, a man nearly half Tui's size, was found unconscious in his prison cell, naked and bleeding.

Tui's former attorney said the man has a history of mental illness that included possible schizophrenia and paranoid delusions.

"To place Joseph Tui in a cell with another inmate placed Mr. Tui at risk and certainly placed that other inmate at risk, given his history of mental illness and assaultive behavior," said Myles Breiner.

Prison reform advocates say that the state faces potential liability for the victim's death.

"Mr. Chung was not sentence to death ... and the state is liable for things that happened within the prison system," said Kat Brady, community coordinator for the Community Alliance on Prisons.

Brady said more and more mentally ill people are winding up in Hawaii's jails and she blames recent state budget cuts.

"Since funding for community mental health centers has been diminished, almost obliterated, prisons have become the de facto mental health centers," she said.

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