Haness rejects public defender

LIHU’E — The man accused of using a visitor’s credit card to buy a plane ticket could be getting a new attorney.

Clinton Haness last week told Fifth Circuit Court Chief Judge George Masuoka that he did not want attorneys in the state public defender’s office to represent him in court. He said that he wanted a court-appointed attorney.

Masuoka set a Thursday, Nov. 10 hearing date, at which time he’ll consider having attorneys from the state Office of the Public Defender withdraw from the case.

Deputy Public Defender Erick Moon represented Haness in court last week.

Masuoka entered a not-guilty plea to the credit-card accusation, along with not-guilty pleas to nine other accusations, on Haness’ behalf.

Haness, 34, was arrested Sept. 20. He allegedly burglarized a Ha’ena residence where Oregon visitor Scott Manier was staying, and allegedly used Manier’s credit card to buy an Aloha Airlines’ ticket to Honolulu.

Haness is also up on a charge of going into a car without the owner’s permission, and with violating a protection order that the car’s owner had out against him.

Haness also faces a charge of using Manier’s credit card to buy $203.14 in groceries and other items at the Safe-way store in Kaua’i Village shopping center in Waipouli. A Safeway receipt that had Manier’s name on it was found in the car, along with Safeway bags, according to Kaua’i Police Department sources.

Haness also faces a charge of trespassing at Hanalei Center, and for taking a sarong from a shop at the center.

According to his court file, Haness was arrested at about 2 p.m. by KPD officers at Lihu’e Airport. During a KPD search, a cap that Haness had on his head was taken off, and allegedly the remains of hair dye were seen behind his ears and around his earlobe areas, officers said.

According to his file, Haness waived his right to remain silent, and chose to make a statement at the Lihu’e KPD headquarters.

In his statement, Haness alleged that he called Aloha Airlines reservations agents to buy a ticket, and used Manier’s credit card. He said he was going to O’ahu for a job interview, and that his mother dyed his hair.

According to his statement, Haness said he went to Safeway and used Manier’s credit card because he did not have enough cash to buy items on his own.

In his statement, Haness said he did not remember being at Hanalei Center, and he did not take a sarong from Tropical Tantrum. He alleged that he found the sarong, and gave it back to the center’s security personnel when he was stopped by them.

According to his file, Haness was given a trespass warning in June to stay away from the center for one year. If he was found there, he would be prosecuted for criminal trespass.

According to his statement, Haness said he tried to call his probation officer before he left for Honolulu, but he did not get a call back.

In his statement, Haness said he can pay back credit-card owner Manier for the charges he made with the card.

According to the Safeway receipt in Haness’ file, some of the items he bought included three Kodak cameras, a pack of bottled coffee drinks, and a Schick razor.

A chicken-Caesar salad, and a barbecue chicken salad from the deli, were also bought by Haness.

According to a KPD bail-request report in his file, Haness has no permanent address, and is considered a flight risk.

Haness is in custody, and his bail has been set at $10,000.

He is scheduled to go to trial Jan. 30, 2006.

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