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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Wednesday, April 24, 2002

Suspect indicted in two murders

By David Waite and Brandon Masuoka
Advertiser Staff Writers

A 23-year-old Kailua man has been indicted by an O'ahu grand jury in two killings — the Jan. 21 strangulation of a Kapahulu woman and the Jan. 26 shooting death of a man in Nu'uanu.

Jason Perry is being held after his indictment in two murders.

Edward Fuller might have been a witness to the first killing.

Tracey Tominaga's body was found in a shallow grave.
The prosecution says the second killing was carried out to eliminate a witness to the first.

At the request of city Deputy Prosecutor Christopher Van Marter, Circuit Judge Gail Nakatani ordered bail of $5 million for Jason K. Perry, who was indicted on two counts of second-degree murder and is in custody at the O'ahu Community Correctional Center.

Yesterday's indictment accuses Perry of killing 37-year-old Tracey Tominaga on Jan. 21. Her body was found early this month in a shallow grave in the hills above Makakilo.

The indictment also accuses Perry of the death of Edward Fuller, 40, Jan. 26 on Jack Lane in Nu'uanu.

In arguing for the high bail for Perry, Van Marter said investigators believe that Fuller was shot to prevent him from becoming a witness against Perry in the Tominaga killing.

Tominaga, a Hilton Hawaiian Village worker, was last seen Jan. 20 and was reported missing five days later.

Seven other men have been indicted on various charges in Tominaga's death.

Van Marter said there is a crystal methamphetamine link in her slaying as well as an overriding motive that he would not divulge.

Van Marter told Nakatani he is concerned that Perry's family might have the means to post the $5 million bail, so he plans to file a request shortly asking that Perry be held without bail.

The others indicted yesterday in connection with Tominaga's death, and the counts against them and amount of bail set, were:

Ryan H. Onuma — criminal conspiracy, attempted first-degree assault and first-degree hindering prosecution; $150,000.

  • Delaneo K. Puha, 24, of Kailua — criminal conspiracy, attempted second-degree assault and first-degree hindering prosecution; $200,000.
  • Andrey E. Lake, 23, of Kailua — criminal conspiracy, second-degree assault and first-degree hindering prosecution; $100,000.
  • Jamison Mitchell, 23, of Kailua — criminal conspiracy, attempted second-degree assault and first-degree hindering prosecution; $100,000.
  • Marvin T. Cadiz, 23, of Waipi'o — attempted second-degree assault and first-degree hindering prosecution; released on his own recognizance.
  • Vaughn N. Kaaumoana, 35, of Kailua — first-degree hindering prosecution; $25,000.
  • David V.C. Magalei — first-degree hindering prosecution; $25,000.

Perry's lawyer, David Bettencourt, said yesterday: "We'll make the prosecution prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt, which I suspect they're going to have a difficult time doing, particularly since they made such sweetheart deals with the very people involved.

"Some of these people are charged with assault in the second degree or attempted assault in the second degree. You can look at the bail amounts and it's pretty clear that these people are singing to save themselves."

"... I think it will turn out that (the prosecutors) cut deals with people who actually committed the murder."

In his request for the amount of bail for each defendant, Van Marter said Onuma is on probation for second-degree theft, Puha is facing a trial on firearms and reckless endangering charges, and Lake hit Tominaga in the head with a large branch and has a prior conviction for abuse of a household member.

He told Nakatani that Mitchell kicked and beat Tominaga, cut her with a knife and had dealt crystal meth in Texas.

He described Cadiz as " probably the least culpable" among those charged. Cadiz has a job, is attending school, is a member of the National Guard and "voluntarily cooperated with law enforcement officials," Van Marter said.

Van Marter said Kaaumoana participated in a coverup of Tominaga's slaying, disposing of a tarp and her belongings, and helped bury her body. Magalei participated in the coverup by digging up the body and pouring acid on it, Van Marter said.

He said officials believe that all of those responsible for Tominaga's disappearance and death have been identified and charged, based on information provided by at least three "cooperating witnesses" whom he declined to name.

Puha, Lake, Kaaumoana and Magalei were being held in a police cellblock last night. Police were searching for the three other men.