Hawaii murder suspect was wanted by police
By Jim Dooley
Advertiser Staff Writer
By Jim Dooley
The suspect charged in the stabbing murder of an 18-year-old Kalihi man Dec. 26 was wanted for arrest on probation violations at the time of the homicide, according to court records.
RJ Ham, of Kalihi, is being held in lieu of $1 million bail on a charge of murdering Fugitogamala Savea the day after Christmas in a parking lot at 2215 N. School St.
Ham was convicted in May 2006 of assaulting two men, was sentenced to five years of probation and enrolled in Project Hope, a state court program that uses "swift and certain" returns to jail as a tool to reduce criminal recidivism among probationers.
According to court records in that case, Ham was ordered to attend "warning hearings" about the consequences of violating terms of his probation.
A December 2006 hearing was convened after Ham had denied using drugs but tested positive for marijuana and crystal methamphetamine. A second hearing was conducted in late September 2007 and Ham was ordered to reappear at another hearing Oct. 31.
Circuit Judge Michael Town issued a bench warrant for Ham's arrest when he failed to attend the Oct. 31 hearing, court records show.
That warrant was outstanding at the time Ham allegedly stabbed Savea in the heart shortly after midnight Dec. 26.
There are tens of thousands of unserved bench warrants in the hands of state sheriffs and county police departments, who do not have the manpower to serve outstanding warrants.
Reach Jim Dooley at email@example.com.