Updated at 9:14 p.m., Friday, September 24, 2004
Suspect has record of assaults and making threats
By Mike Gordon
Advertiser Staff Writer
William K. Albinio, 38, was being held at the police cellblock in the death of Edwin C. Medeiros, the 58-year-old owner of Nu'uanu Liquor & Sundries, 1627 Nu'uanu Ave.
Medeiros died Thursday after his family removed him from life support systems, prompting police to open a second-degree murder investigation. No charges have been filed.
Albinio, whose last known address was in Waikiki, has been convicted of 23 misdemeanors and petty misdemeanors since August 1989, according to the Hawai?i Criminal Justice Data Center. His record includes five third-degree assault convictions, a pair of second-degree terroristic threatening convictions and one assault on a police officer.
His most recent conviction was last week. On Sept. 15, Albinio was convicted on three charges for harassing two women and spitting at the face of a police officer about 4:20 p.m. Sept. 11 near the Hale Koa Hotel and the Hilton Hawaiian Village.
The Medeiros case began about 7 p.m. Sunday, when Medeiros' wife, who is the clerk at the store, asked a male customer to leave because he had become disorderly, said police Detective James Anderson.
"He came into the store and tried to cut in front of another customer," Anderson said. "He asked something of the clerk about cutting the price or something. She told him, 'No, you pay full price.' He started swearing at her. She told him to leave."
Medeiros then stepped in, asking the angry customer to leave. The man shoved him backward. Medeiros hit his head on a store shelf as he fell and was knocked unconscious.
When Medeiros' wife rushed to help him, the man assaulted her before leaving the store, Anderson said. She was not seriously injured.
The man fled in a mar witnesses told police. They gave officers the license plate number but investigators discovered that the car had been sold recently and the new owner had not registered the vehicle, Anderson said.
Medeiros was taken to The Queen's Medical Center with severe head injuries and his condition worsened through the week. He died at 4:30 p.m. Thursday.
Today, a steady flow of customers at the store expressed their condolences to a longtime employee of the Medeiroses. The woman, who identified herself only as Pam, worked with the couple when they owned a downtown bar and moved with them to the store two years ago.
Pam said Medeiros was a Vietnam veteran who lost a leg to diabetes.
He said Edwin and Sum Kum Medeiros worked every night at the store.
"They're good people and he was a very nice guy," Pam said. He said the couple had been married for about 25 years and had one son and a grandson. After the assault, police issued a CrimeStoppers bulletin and received a tip that Albinio would be in District Court at 8:30 a.m. yesterday. He was being arraigned on a third-degree assault charge from April 2, 2003.
"We went down and I saw him in the courtroom and when he was done, I went in and arrested him," Anderson said. "It was very quiet, no fanfare. He didn't resist."
Staff writer Curtis Lum contributed to this report. Reach Mike Gordon at firstname.lastname@example.org or 525-8012.