Deputy prosecutor involved in state's largest rave

Published: Nov. 6, 2014 at 12:23 AM HST|Updated: Nov. 6, 2014 at 4:39 PM HST
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KAKAAKO, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) - It was the largest Electronic Dance Music party, or EDM, in Hawaii.

An estimated ten thousand people attended the Love Festival on September 27 at Kakaako Park.

Hawaii News Now has learned, one of the key producers was Deputy Prosecutor Jon Riki Karamatsu.

His boss, Honolulu Prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro did not know that Karamatsu was involved until weeks after the event. And sources say, Kaneshiro was not happy.

"I'm not somebody who's a big proponent of rave parties in general," says former Honolulu City Prosecutor Peter Carlisle, "They tend to have problems with alcohol and drugs and I can't imagine somebody who is a professional in the prosecutor's office endorsing that kind of behavior."

Karamatsu is proud of his involvement. His blog provides a running tally of all his convictions and has pictures of him on stage during the Love Festival.

Karamatsu says this was his first time helping to produce an event like this. He says he was helping the organizer, who is a friend.

Karamatsu's name is on the state permit as the emergency contact. He says in addition to helping with the permit, he helped get 155 people to work security and made sure three ambulances were stationed there.

Critics say law enforcement officials shouldn't be associated with events like raves.

"I would personally never get involved with something like this because there's too much risk for injury or death," says retired Honolulu Police Assistant Chief Gregory Lefcourt.

No one died at the Love Festival, but there have been deaths at other EDM parties.

Prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro has told his Deputy Prosecutor that he cannot assist with any more of these events.

Karamatsu is a former state lawmaker from 2002 - 2010. He was convicted of driving while highly intoxicated in 2007 and began working for the Prosecutor's Office in 2010.

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