Police investigating homicide in Puna

Police are investigating a homicide after finding a woman’s lifeless body this morning in Pahoa’s Hawaiian Beaches subdivision.

Shortly before 5 a.m. today, officers responded to a report of an active burglary at a residence on Kahakai Boulevard. It was reported that the residence was being renovated and no one should be there.


Responding officers found numerous shattered glass windows in the home. Checks were made in the residence, and no one was located within. Shortly afterwards, officers observed fresh footprints on the exterior sidewalk area of the residence, and upon investigating further, they located an adult man hiding behind a stone wall bordering the property. He was taken into custody at that time for trespassing.

As officers continued to clear the property, the lifeless body of an adult female was located in the yard behind the residence.

The woman had numerous blunt force trauma-type injuries about her head and body. She was taken to the Hilo Medical Center and pronounced dead at 10:53 a.m.

Detectives from the Hilo Criminal Investigation Section responded to the scene and are continuing to investigate the case, which is classified as a second-degree murder, as well as trespassing and burglary. The exact involvement of the man taken into custody is still under investigation.

The identity of the victim is being withheld pending positive identification and notification of next of kin.

An autopsy is scheduled for Friday to determine the exact cause of death.

Police are asking for anyone with information on this incident or who may have been in 15-300 block of Kahakai Boulevard early Thursday morning to contact Detective John Balberde at (808) 961-2386 or email him at John.Balberde@hawaiicounty.gov.

Those who prefer anonymity may call Crime Stoppers at (808) 961-8300 and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000. Crime Stoppers is a volunteer program run by ordinary citizens who want to keep their community safe. Crime Stoppers does not record calls or subscribe to any Caller ID service. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

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