Background check wasn't completed for Hawaii teacher accused of - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Background check wasn't completed for Hawaii teacher accused of sex crimes

US Marshals entering apartment US Marshals entering apartment
Deborah Nicholson-Hoshiyama Deborah Nicholson-Hoshiyama
WAIKIKI (HawaiiNewsNow) -

A Hawaii teacher accused of having sex with an eighth-grade student on the mainland is now suspended from her job at a Makiki charter school.

Deborah Nicholson Hoshiyama, 45, was arrested by Honolulu Police and U.S. Marshals at her Waikiki condo early Tuesday morning.

The arrest warrant was issued in Maricopa County, Arizona last month. Police there say she had a sexual relationship with an eighth grader between 2007 and 2008. But it wasn't until earlier this year, that she was indicted by a grand jury on five counts of sexual conduct with a minor.

It's unclear why it took so long for the outcry and Hoshiyama continued to teach in Avondale, Arizona until she and her family moved to Hawaii in late August. 

On her Facebook Page, Nicholson recently gloated about getting her teaching certificate in Hawaii.

On November 7, she started working at Voyager Public Charter School in Makiki.

"We did do an interview process as well as we checked three references from former employers back in Arizona prior to her hire," says Jeff Vilardi, the Principal at Voyager. He says they submitted her name to the Department of Education for their approval.

But the DOE says, she was not approved yet because she hadn't passed their background check.  Phase one of the process was only completed this week. The next phase would have included fingerprints. Theoretically, that would have shown the arrest warrant.

So what happened? The DOE and Voyager say they are trying to figure that out. In the meantime, Hoshiyama is suspended with pay. She is being held at the Honolulu Police Department pending an extradition hearing.

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