Saturday, December 6, 2008

KPD Blue- Chapter 18 : The Short Reign of Acting Chief Wilie Ihu

KPD Blue


By Anthony Sommer

Chapter 18 : The Short Reign of Acting Chief Wilie Ihu

Willie Ihu, who had served as acting chief while Freitas was suspended, also was named acting chief when Freitas retired.

Like every other key KPD figure in this tale, Ihu also is tied to the Lap Dancing Incident.

According to his own testimony in the trail of Randy Machado, Ihu was told by Machado what was going on. He never investigated, never filed a complaint against the officers and never was disciplined for failing to do so.

Ihu served only seven months as acting chief. He then retired on May 1, 2004, and was replaced by Acting Chief K.C. Lum.

Ihu was around just long enough to demonstrate how acceptable racism is within KPD.

In 2004, a dog belonging to a local farmer attacked and killed a 17-month-old white boy on Kauai’s north shore. According to several sources who said they heard the police radio conversation, the dispatcher told a KPD supervisor to proceed to the scene immediately. The supervisor reportedly replied, “No hurry, it’s just a haole kid.”

Truston Heart Liddle was the 17-month-old blondhaired toddler killed by a chained dog owned by a local farmer. There was no fence around the dog.

The dog was destroyed but no charges—such as negligent homicide or reckless endangerment, for example—were ever filed against its owner. Its owner was local. Truston was white.

Truston was the grandson of Greg Liddle of Kapaa, one of Hawaii’s most famous surfboard “shapers” or designers. On Feb. 24, 2004, Truston was with his parents—Damon “Dove” Liddle and his wife Raven—on a small farm where they grew organic vegetables. While his parents were working, the child wandered onto an adjoining farm where several dogs were chained or caged.

Truston walked up to a 40-pound un-neutered male dog, which attacked him.

According to Dr. Becky Rhodes, director of the Kauai Humane Society, chaining a dog guarantees the animal will turn mean. “The dog will attack anyone or anything that comes within the radius of its chain,” she said.

Truston’s six-year-old brother saw the attack and ran to his parents. They found the dog still biting Truston as he lay on the ground.

The couple put the injured child in their car and headed for a medical clinic in Kilauea, calling for help on their cell phone. The police dispatcher told them to stop along the road and wait for firefighters, an ambulance, and police who already were on their way.

Truston was taken to Wilcox Memorial Hospital where he died in the emergency room of multiple head, neck, and chest wounds.

Acting Police Chief Ihu decided because Truston had wandered onto the neighbor’s unfenced property because his parents were not supervising him, there was no crime on the part of the local farmer who owned the dog.

The officer who made the “just a haole kid” remark over the police radio never has been identified officially. According to the KPD, the tape of the radio conversation was “accidentally erased.”

But according to numerous sources, when he heard about the “just a haole kid” transmission, Acting Chief Ihu literally ran to the dispatcher’s office and immediately confiscated, bagged and tagged the tape as “evidence” to keep it from becoming public, even though he decided there were no criminal charges to pursue.

5 comments:

Joan said...

According to several sources who said they heard the police radio conversation.

But according to numerous sources, when he heard about the “just a haole kid” transmission, Acting Chief Ihu literally ran to the dispatcher’s office and immediately confiscated, bagged and tagged the tape as “evidence” to keep it from becoming public, even though he decided there were no criminal charges to pursue.


Like who, Tony? Who are all these anonymous sources? Did you ever try and get a copy of the 9-11 tape? Did you hear the police radio? Or are you just repeating (or making up) gossip? If you're going to be making allegations like this, you should be able to back it up with something on the record.

This is exactly the sort of "reportage" that prompted me to describe your book as "a poorly researched and highly editorialized rehash of old news billed as a political expose."

Joan said...

PS: And who was this supervisor who allegedly made the remark? If you're so intent on outing racists in KPS, why didn't you name him? Because you don't have any proof and you're worried about being sued?

Mel Rapozo said...

Thanks Joan. This book is nothing but unproven allegations. Although I am the subject of discussion on numerous pages in the book (I even have my own chapter), do you think that Tony ever called me for a comment? Of course not because I would have discredited many of the untruths. This is the worst piece of "reportage" I have ever seen. Unfortunately the marketing of this trash was successful and many people spent their money to purchase a compilation of gossip. This is a shame. Thanks again for your vigilance.

HSSoloman97 said...

I am a Native Hawaiian and from the island of Kauai. I agree that the author should have gotten confirmation about the alleged comment by Walter Ihu; on the other hand, comments like what Mr. Ihu allegedly said are not uncommon words uttered by KPD. Let's be fair to the family and to the deceased child. If anything, the book forces KPD and other government agencies to look at their operations and asks them to be better than they are now. A man, haole or not, would not devote so much time to gathering this kind of information for a book for nothing. The point is, KDP and other government agencies have to get better at what they do and have to become the kind of agencies we can be proud of and stand behind. There is a reason why there is so much mistrust with government agencies and politicians like Mr. Rapozo. If a politician like Mr. Rapozo has nothing to hide, then write a book to defend the accusations. While I don't believe everything in the book, I know that deep in my gut there is some truth to the author's perceptions. If a poltitican, local or not, doesn't want to be talked about, then the politician shouldn't run for office. It's really upsetting to know that a politician would write to defend such inhumane comments. Mr. Rapozo didn't filter anything he wrote and didn't bother to offer condelensences to the victim's family. Local or not, that's not a very humane way of handling this situation. I'm appaulled and call upon Mr. Rapozo to write a retraction; that would be the "local" thing to do. Have you ever heard of "open mouth, insert foot"!

Tony Sommer said...

Joan and HSSoloman87,

I know who made the comment. I heard it on my scanner. Everyone who heard it and told me about it told me who it was. Two very reliable sources told me about Acting Chief Ihu running downstairs from his office to the radio rooom to grab the tape.

I didn't use the supervisor's name because I couldn't get a copy or a transcript of the tape because Ihu declared it evidence. I certainly requested it, several times in fact. Without being able to prove it in court (of course I was worried about being sued), I wouldn't publish the name. And, no, I don't name my sources.

There is nothing in the book that isn't true. But there also are some things that are NOT in the book that I KNOW are true but I couldn't document them so I didn't use them. That name happens to be one of them.

Tony