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6-year-old reported missing in September, but likely murdered a month before, police say

Published: Nov. 10, 2021 at 7:33 PM HST|Updated: Nov. 11, 2021 at 11:13 AM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - While the investigation into the disappearance of 6-year-old Isabella “Ariel” Kalua remains ongoing, police announced Wednesday that they believe she was murdered in mid-August.

Here’s a timeline of the case:

  • Mid-August: Police said they believe Isabella “Ariel” Kalua was murdered — a full month before she was reported missing.
  • Sept. 12: The girl’s adoptive parents, Isaac and Lehua Kalua, told HPD that Isabella was last seen asleep in her room at their home on Puha Street.
  • Sept. 13: The girl’s adoptive parents reported her missing.
  • Week 1 in her disappearance: Isabella’s biological family organized search efforts throughout east Oahu with the help of community volunteers.
  • Sept. 20: HPD officially suspended its search for the missing girl, but said the investigation would continue.
  • Late last week: Police said the missing person’s case turned into a murder case focused on the Kaluas. Officials did not specify what evidence led to the switch.
  • Nov. 10: Authorities arrested Isaac and Lehua Kalua at their home in Waimanalo, which is where Isabella was last seen alive. Both are being held without bail.

Since Isabella’s disappearance, the six-year-old’s biological family has been holding rallies in Waimanalo, in front of the Kalua’s house, and at Child Welfare Services to demand justice.

Officials said so far Isabella’s body has not been recovered and searches of the Kaluas’ property continue.

Police said the investigation remains ongoing.

Authorities asked anyone who may have interacted with Isabella and her sisters as far back as 2019 and through August 2021 to contact investigators on the case or Honolulu CrimeStoppers (955-8300).

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