HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Eight years ago, Charlys Ty Tang was fatally beaten in Waipahu.
The 41-year-old left behind a wife and two children.
His accused killer ― Kilani DeRego ― was out on bail and facing retrial in connection with the crime. And he’s the same man, police say, who allegedly tried to hold up a Kalihi game room on Monday.
That news was shocking to Tang’s family.
“I definitely do feel pretty angry right now. We were not contacted by anybody,” said the victim’s son, Jarvis.
The victim’s son told Hawaii News Now his family had no clue Derego was walking around a free man.
“The entire time I was just thinking he was spending his life sentence in jail,” said Tang. “When I found out this morning, it took me back to when I saw my dad in the hospital. All beat up, connected to machines.”
Charlys Ty Tang was killed on the job in 2010.
Prosecutors say DeRego and Michael Robles, both teenagers at the time, had walked out of a youth group home and caught a cab to Waipahu.
But instead of paying the fare, they allegedly beat Tang to death.
“It was a completely unprovoked attack and occurred at a time in which he (Derego) was AWOL from a facility to which he was confined,” said Tang family attorney Mark Davis.
At his own trial, Robles acted out how DeRego delivered the fatal blow. But he ended up refusing to testify in DeRego’s trial.
DeRego was convicted of murder but an appeals court overtuned his the conviction in 2015. It ruled prosecutors shouldn’t have been allowed to use statements from Robles in DeRego’s trial.
Over prosecutors strong objections, Judge Glenn Kim allowed DeRego to post a $150,000 bail last year.
He returned to jail within a few months after attempting to cut off his ankle monitor. But Kim granted his bail again in July against more objections from prosecutors.
Tang said DeRego’s repeated disregard for the law speaks to his character.
“You kind of do this to yourself, if you’re getting into these types of situations. That kind of says who you are as a person,” said Tang. “He definitely should be in jail.”
HNN contacted DeRego’s attorney, but he declined to comment.
Derego is currently in police custody pending new charges in the game room case.