EXCLUSIVE: Big Island police investigate South Kohala murder mystery
PUAKO, BIG ISLAND (HawaiiNewsNow) - Kona police sources say officers were led to human remains Monday by a man who confessed he was involved in a murder and could show them where the body was buried.
Officials confirm detectives recovered the remains around 5:30 p.m. Monday in a vacant lot between Queen Ka'ahumanu Highway and Puako Beach Drive.
Sources say the man who led officers there claimed he was coerced into helping another man corner the victim. The alleged accomplice also claimed he witnessed the man shoot the victim and then assisted in disposing the body.
An autopsy has been ordered to determine the cause of death and the identity of the deceased, but police sources say they are investigating whether the victim is 37-year-old musician Lopaka Ryder -- who hasn't been heard from since last Thanksgiving. Family members reported him missing in January.
Police sources say the man who has been accused of murder by the alleged accomplice is already in custody on prior charges.
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