Assault hearing continued

LIHUE — A preliminary hearing scheduled for a Kapaa man charged with multiple assaults on officers and resisting arrests was continued on Tuesday.

Donning a green jumpsuit, a black eye and an arm in a sling, Ray Kuna Harada, 43, appeared before District Judge Trudy Senda to listen to police testimony relating to allegations made against him.

He chose instead to have his hearing continued to 1 p.m. Wednesday, Oct 21.

Harada is charged with three counts of assault on a police officer in the first degree and one count of escape in the first degree.

Police arrested Harada Oct. 7 near Kahili Beach. He is accused of assaulting the arresting officer and trying to escape, but police were able to detain him. He was located and arrested after the county said the public helped notify the department of the fugitive’s whereabouts.

Last week’s confrontation was not the first time Harada is accused of assaulting officers.

On Sept. 29, Kauai Police Department officers Rolland Peahu and Chito Garduque attempted to arrest Harada at a campsite along a beach access trail leading up to Pila beach for failing to appear in court, according to court documents.

During their attempt, Harada resisted violently. Even after being Tased by Garduque, Harada escaped and reportedly injured the officers after he had been handcuffed.

Harada twisted and pulled so violently, according to the documents, he managed to pull one officer 20 feet down a steep hillside into the thick brush.

Court records show officers reported multiple injuries after their encounter with Harada including a bloody nose, lacerated forearms, abrasions and a gouged, bitten finger.

After the altercation, the county issued a press release asking for help in locating him.

“He has a variety of charges involving physical altercation with law enforcement officers,” Mark Zenger, Harada’s defense attorney said. “We’ll get the reports, review them and see where the case takes us.”

Harada was originally wanted on two separate bench warrants totaling $200,000 for unrelated charges in circuit court.

He is being held on $500,000 bail.

Deputy prosecutor George White asked on Tuesday that two witnesses, Garduque and officer Jonathan Anderson, return to provide testimony.


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