Maui Police release first update in cases of two missing women

Maui Police release first update in cases of two missing women (7:30 a.m. Live Report)
Moreira "Mo" Monsalve (left) & Carly "Charli" Scott (right)
Moreira "Mo" Monsalve (left) & Carly "Charli" Scott (right)
Alexis Felicilda
Alexis Felicilda
Jeff Simon
Jeff Simon

WAILUKU, MAUI (HawaiiNewsNow) - UPDATE at 8:30 a.m. WEDNESDAY:
The families of two missing Maui women got answers straight from Maui Police Tuesday night. It was the first time MPD has publicly discussed the cases of Carly "Charli" Scott and Moreira "Mo" Monsalve.

Friends and family of missing Maui women Charli Scott and Mo Monsalve flooded a Kihei Community Association meeting Tuesday night, hoping to press MPD for answers in their ongoing investigations. Maui Police Chief Gary Yabuta say they can't imagine what they're going through but his officers hoped to offer some insight by fielding questions and listening to comments from the public.

The town hall got heated, and tensions escalated quickly after Maui PD gave their investigation update and opened the floor to feedback. Despite heightened emotions, the meeting remained civil.

Maui PD officers were in full force and Captain John Jakubczak, Commander of the Criminal Investigation Division, handled most of the questions from the community. The public asked everything from whether or not police think a serial killer may be loose on Maui to why the FBI isn't involved.

Chief Yabuta was quick to jump to his department's defense, explaining that the FBI would only be called in to help if needed and that's not yet the case.

"I believe in my officers. I believe in my investigators. I believe in the Captain. I believe in the Lieutenant. You have concerns, we're working our best. And I would say this also, that the Maui Police Department's relationship with the FBI is the best in the nation. If I need them, they will be with us. In fact, they have already given us information. So we're not ignoring the FBI by any means," a passionate Yabuta told the crowd.

Alexis Felicilda, the daughter of 46-year-old Moreira "Mo" Monsalve says she's unsatisfied with the MPD's responses.

"I wanted to know what is the procedure when a missing person case is filed. When you make that first initial report, what is the procedure? How does it work? What follows? What is the first 48, as they call it? And I couldn't get that answer and it isn't public information and so that was a little unsettling because I wanted to know if it was followed in my mother's case," Felicilda said.

Jeff Simon, a close family friend of five-months pregnant 27-year-old Carly "Charli" Scott, says the family is weary and plans to spend Wednesday regrouping and working on a volunteer search schedule to resume on Thursday.

"I think they have a tough job and I think they're doing a good job doing it," Simon said in regards to Maui Police. "I know there was a lot of criticism here tonight, but the family fully supports what they're doing and really appreciates their help."

Maui Police say while there are many similarities, they do not believe the disappearance of two Maui women in the last month, Carly "Charli" Scott and Moreira "Mo" Monsalve, are connected. Maui Police Chief Gary Yabuta says his department has made both cases a top priority. Chief Yabuta says he is very proud of his officers' investigation -- adding he understands both families' frustration and empathizes with them, saying none of his detectives are sleeping well at night either.

Maui Police Criminal Investigative Division Captain John Jakubczak says both investigations are still being handled as "missing person" cases, and there is no evidence at this time to suggest otherwise. While there are no suspects, Capt. Jakubczak says both women's ex-boyfriends are persons of interest.

Monsalve was last seen on January 12, 2014 with her ex-boyfriend, Bernard Brown. Despite extensive searches, the mother of three hasn't been seen or heard from since.  Brown was spotted by government workers in his pick up truck at the Polipoli Recreation Area on January 14, two days after Monsalve went missing. Her purse and other items were discovered in a dumpster across the street from Brown's apartment days later. Police using K-9 units, along with family and friends, searched both the park and area around the apartment, but didn't find Monsalve.  Capt. Jakubczak confirms Brown was not cooperative with their investigation and refused to take a polygraph. Maui PD says they were aware he left the island, but there was nothing they could do to stop him. Capt. Jakubczak says officers have not been able to search Brown's apartment since he left, but couldn't elaborate further. He says Maui PD has not been in contact with Brown since he left the state.

Carly "Charli" Scott, who is five-months pregnant, was last seen February 9, 2014.  Her ex-boyfriend, Steven Capobianco, is the father of her unborn child. In an exclusive interview with Hawaii News Now, Capobianco says Scott picked him up from his home and drove him out to Keanae, where his truck had broken down.  She reportedly followed him home along Hana Highway, but Capobianco says he stopped seeing her headlights behind him near Haiku when he sped ahead. Capt. Jakubczak confirms Capobianco has been cooperating with Maui PD and volunteered for questioning and a polygraph test, though he wouldn't disclose any further details.  Capobianco tells Hawaii News Now, Maui police say he failed the lie detector test but he wasn't sure he believed them, adding it may have been a tactic.

Capt. Jakubczak confirms the FBI is not involved in either of the two investigations.  He says the department has not made a request for the FBI's assistance and any reports that Maui PD turned down the FBI's offer to help are untrue.  Chief Yabuta says he is very confident in his officers' abilities and reiterated both missing person cases are within MPD's jurisdiction.

Maui Police say the best way for the public to help is to call in any credible tips they may have and to notify officers immediately if they believe they find evidence connected to either woman's disappearance.

Related Link:

FULL TRANSCRIPT: Maui PD's press conference on two missing women

Copyright 2014 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.