Man accused of trying to kill roommate pleads not guilty

LIHUE — A man accused of trying to kill his roommate pleaded not guilty Wednesday to attempted murder and other charges.

Jeffrey Simpson appeared before Judge Kathleen Watanabe on second-degree attempted murder, reckless endangerment and possession of firearms charges.

Simpson, who is out of jail on a $53,000 bail, was arrested Oct. 11 after police responded to a home on Kamalu Road when residents reported hearing gunshots. When police arrived, they found a man on his bedroom floor, suffering from multiple gunshot wounds.

The details of what the men were fighting about and the events leading up to the shooting remain under investigation, said Justin Kollar, prosecuting attorney.

The 52-year-old victim lives in the house with several adult roommates, including Simpson, according to police. He was medevaced to Queen’s Hospital on Oahu in serious but stable condition.

Simpson, 57, was not at the house when police arrived. He turned himself in at the Lihue police station later that day.

During Wednesday’s proceedings, Simpson was told to surrender any firearms.

His laywer, Craig De Costa, also asked that police return his personal belongings.

“His possessions, like his driver’s license were seized by police, but aren’t being used as evidence,” he said.

Simpson’s trial is set for March 6 in front of Judge Randal Valenciano.

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