Honolulu prosecutor suffers more setbacks - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Honolulu prosecutor suffers more setbacks

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

It has been a controversial year for Honolulu's Prosecuting Attorney.

Keith Kaneshiro's office has suffered several high-profile setbacks.

A circuit court judge is currently deciding if prosecutorial misconduct should end Kaneshiro's battle with game rooms.

And Tuesday, he admitted to the Honolulu City Council that sex assault cases had to be thrown out because too much time had passed.

Criminal Law Professor Ken Lawson says the cases were filed before Kaneshiro took office, but he still bears responsibility.

"To allow 20 cases to go past the statute of limitations and then try to skirt the blame and say, you know what, it didn't happen on my watch, it got dismissed on your watch. Why didn't you know about it sooner?" says Lawson.

"He stepped forward, he took responsibility, he apologized," says Ann Kobayashi with the Honolulu City Council. She says Kaneshiro should be commended for bringing their attention to the issue and saying a new tracking system will prevent that from happening again.

Kaneshiro also was criticized for failing in a second try to convict federal agent Christopher Deedy for shooting an unarmed civilian. Experts say Kaneshiro should have been willing to accept a lesser charge than murder from the start.

Lawson says the job comes with a certain amount of controversy but Kaneshiro does have two years before he faces reelection.

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