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The Honolulu Advertiser

Posted at 11:46 a.m., Thursday, May 11, 2006

Big Island man accused in tourist attacks

Advertiser Staff

HILO, Hawai'i — Big Island police yesterday charged a 24-year-old Puna man suspected of mugging several tourists.

Brandon Tisalona of Kea'au is accused of assaulting a 61-year-old woman from Washington state and demanding money from her around noon Monday in downtown Hilo. The woman suffered minor injuries but did not need medical attention.

Officers found the suspect nearby and arrested him after a brief foot chase. During their investigation, police learned that a California couple had reported being confronted by Tisalona, with the suspect allegedly shoving the woman and challenging the man to a fight. A Big Isle man also reported that Tisalona had challenged him to fight.

Tisalona was charged yesterday with second-degree robbery and two counts of harassment, and was being held at the Hilo cellblock in lieu of $10,500 bail.