Dateline NBC to feature Kauai murder case

Updated: Jun. 14, 2018 at 1:02 PM HST
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Darren Galas (left) Sandy G. (right) (Image: Archive)
Darren Galas (left) Sandy G. (right) (Image: Archive)

NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK (HawaiiNewsNow) - This Friday Dateline on NBC will feature a former cold case from Kauai.

Reporter Keith Morrison has been following the details of the murder for nearly 10 years, as a father fought to bring his daughter's killer to justice despite one setback after another.

The program titled 'The Other Side of Paradise' will air at 9:00 p.m. on KHNL.

Dateline first came upon the story of Larry Mendonca and his daughter while on another Dateline assignment back in 2009.

At that time Mendonca took the news crew to the grave of his daughter, Sandra Galas.

"She won't be forgotten as long as I'm alive," Mendonca said as he promised to bring her killer to justice.

Morrison said in promotional material for the broadcast, "we had no idea then where this meeting would lead us."

On Jan. 25, 2006, Sandra Galas was found strangled in the garage of her 'Ele'ele home.

Her estranged husband Darren Galas was the prime suspect.

In January of this year, 12 years after the murder, Galas entered a no contest plea in court to a charge of first degree assault – a class B felony. Judge Kathleen Watanabe accepted his plea and he was found guilty.

Galas was sentenced to a 10-year open prison term for his connection to the crime.

The murder gripped the island and the "Never Forget Sandy G" movement to raise awareness of domestic abuse echoed throughout the Kauai community.

In 2006, police didn't have enough evidence to arrest Galas immediately after the crime. The case went cold until 2012, when investigators were able to pin him to the crime with the use of new forensic techniques.

He was then arrested, charged and held on $1 million bail.

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