Prosecutors move to dismiss case against Navy veteran wrongly convicted 16 years ago

Day after Hawaii News Now exposé on man’s wrongful conviction, prosecutors call off retrial

HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Honolulu Prosecutor’s Office filed a motion late Wednesday afternoon to dismiss the child sex assault charges against Roynes Dural.

Dural, a Navy veteran, was convicted in 2003, and he served eight years in prison, eight years on parole. But his conviction was overturned in 2018 by the court of appeals.

The reasons the conviction was overturned, the witnesses for the prosecution recanted and new information surfaced showing the jury didn’t hear the whole story.

The prosecution’s motion to dismiss comes less than 24 hours after Hawaii News Now featured Dural’s controversial case in a half-hour special report, Innocence Lost.

A video of Dural’s lie detector test was part of the show. Dural passed that crucial polygraph.

Also included in the show, video of the victim’s lie detector test. The teen daughter of a woman Dural once dated, did not pass according to records used in the appeals hearing.

Wednesday, just minutes before the courts closed, the Honolulu deputy prosecutor filed the motion which included their efforts to track down the victim, including texts and voice calls that were not returned. When the office did reach the girl, she indicated that she wasn’t sure if she wanted to participate in another trial.

“The state has indicated they can’t find the witness so they don’t have any witnesses,” said William Harrison, Dural’s attorney.

The witnesses who recanted, including the girl’s mother, testified for the prosecution during the first trial but are now witnesses for Dural’s defense team.

A panel of 100 potential jurors were scheduled to appear in circuit court on Monday for jury selection, but have now been notified that they would not be needed.

The prosecution’s motion asks the case be dismissed without prejudice, asking for an extra 30 days. But Dural’s team wants it dismissed with prejudice, dropping it for good.

“It’s been a long and horrible journey for him so he wants it to end," Harrison said.

A judge will decide on Tuesday which motion will be granted.

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