Murder exposes Kailua's unseen homeless issue

Forecasters say Kailua's unseen homeless issue

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The murder of a homeless man in Kailua Monday night was the second such crime in the past six months in the small windward side town.

The incident has suddenly brought Kailua's homeless issue to light.

"It is a smaller community, so they know where to go without being bothered so much" said Cindy Macpherson, program manager for Family Promise of Hawaii.

"It's definitely there, you just don't see it as much," she continued.

Unlike the massive homeless encampments in Honolulu, Kailua's homeless tend to keep mobile during the day, with a few exceptions.   However, they're there.

"You don't see them in the day.  As soon as 5-6 o'clock, you start see them in the streets looking for a place for the night" said Paul, who works at Clyde's Auto Care Center.  Paul is a lifelong windward side resident who says the homeless population isn't an aggressive one.

"The homeless, no problem.  We never have a problem with them".

Macpherson agrees.  She adds, however, that the spotlight has turned to them because of the size of the community.

"It could happen anywhere on this island but I think the Kailua community is probably more affected by it because they've probably seen this gentleman and gotten to know him maybe".

A small memorial has been erected on Uluniu Street, where the victim was killed.  The homicide investigation is ongoing. 

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