Victims of the State

4 Cases

Map of Counties

U.S. Cases

Hawaii County, HI
Pauline & Schweitzers
Dec 24, 1991

While riding her bicycle, 23-year-old Dana Ireland was hit by a car.  Then she was taken to a remote area 5 miles north of the collision site where she was raped and murdered.  Two-and-a half years later an Oahu inmate, Frank Pauline, Jr., came forward with information.  He said that in exchange for the information he wanted the authorities to look kindly on his half-brother who was facing drug charges.
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Honolulu County, HI
Thomas Spindle
Feb 5, 1982

(Military Case) Thomas Wayne Spindle was convicted by a U.S. Army court of the murder of 14-year-old Derek Kusumoto.  Spindle had discovered Derek's body at the foot of a steep entryway into an underground munitions bunker at Schofield Barracks.  Derek was the adopted son of Lieutenant Colonel Howard Kusumoto while Spindle was a Specialist Four, equivalent to a hard-striped corporal.  (IIPPI)

Honolulu County, HI
Shaun Rodrigues
July 8, 2000 (Manoa)

Shaun Rodrigues was convicted of robbing Dawn Sugihara and her mother, Diane Sugihara, at gunpoint.  Rodrigues had helped to install an alarm system in the victims' home two weeks before the robbery, during which time Dawn had served him a cold drink.  The victims' initial statements cast doubt on whether they could identify the perpetrator.  Nevertheless, they identified Rodrigues from a suggestive photo lineup in which his photo stood out.  After both victims had picked Rodrigues, both had to be told that he was the man who helped install the alarm system.

No physical evidence connected Rodrigues to the crime.  Rodrigues' family placed him at home on the morning of the crime.  An identical robbery with the same M.O. happened nearby 10 days later when Rodrigues was incarcerated.  In 2004, a prison inmate identified another person as the perpetrator of the crime.  The inmate's story checked out in that the person he identified worked nearby and did not show up for work on the day of the crime.  In May 2006, a fingerprint lifted from Diane's jewelry box was reportedly run through the national database.  Later investigation showed that it was only run, unsuccessfully, against Rodrigues.

In 2006, the Hawaii Supreme Court upheld Rodrigues' conviction.  Prosecutors plan to recommend to the parole board that Rodrigues serve his full 20-year sentence since he has shown no remorse.  (Honolulu Advertiser) (KGMB 9) (Website)  [9/06]

Honolulu County, HI
Tayshea Aiwohi
July 17, 2001

Tayshea Aiwohi was convicted in 2004 of manslaughter in the death of her son, Treyson, who died two days after being born.  His cause of death was ruled to be methamphetamine poisoning.  Aiwohi was charged with manslaughter based on her methamphetamine use during pregnancy. She pleaded no contest on the condition she could appeal her conviction, and she was sentenced to 10 years probation. In 2005 the Hawaii Supreme Court overturned her conviction, ruling that she could not have committed manslaughter as it requires behavior against a person that is related to that person's death.  Since her alleged behavior occurred prior to her son's birth, and since a fetus is not legally a person, she could not be guilty of the crime.  (State v. Aiwohi) (Star Bulletin)  [9/08]