Suspect charged in teen's murder
By Suzanne Roig
Advertiser Staff Writer
Police charged a 29-year-old Makiki man yesterday with second-degree murder in connection with the death of Iris Rodrigues-Kaikana, the Kalihi teenager whose naked body was found in an alley two weeks ago.
Bail was set at $2 million for Corbit Ahn, of Matlock Avenue. He will make an initial appearance in court tomorrow morning, officials said.
Police said a sample of DNA taken from Rodrigues-Kaikana's body matched a profile of Ahn's DNA that had been entered into the Hawai'i State DNA Index System and the national DNA Index System, which contained more than 7.2 million offender profiles and 277,215 forensic profiles as of July.
The charges came two weeks to the day that 18-year-old Rodrigues-Kaikana was killed. Her body was found the following morning in a pedestrian alley next to the Kamehameha Homes public housing complex.
The Honolulu Medical Examiner's office has listed the cause of death as manual strangulation.
Her father, Steven Rodrigues, said yesterday that he felt some relief after police detectives notified him that they had charged Ahn.
"It puts a relief off of my chest," Rodrigues said. "Now I know that this is the guy who did the crime. We don't know, though, if there were other people involved. It was the wrong time and the wrong place for my daughter."
In court documents, police gave this account of the events leading up to the death of Rodrigues-Kaikana:
Residents of the apartment on Haka Drive where Rodrigues-Kaikana was visiting Aug. 23 told police that they heard her telling Ahn to "get off me" while both were sitting on a couch in the apartment.
Shortly after that, a boy saw Ahn pushing Rodrigues-Kaikana out of the apartment toward the rear porch. No one remembers seeing Rodrigues-Kaikana and Ahn together after 11 p.m.
The rear of the apartment is near where Rodrigues-Kaikana's body was found.
When police interviewed Ahn, he told them he did not assault Rodrigues-Kaikana. He also told police he left the apartment for his home before 11 p.m.
A neighbor told police that at 11:35 p.m. she saw a man who looked like Ahn walking by her Kamehameha Homes apartment toward the back of the Haka Drive apartment.
Later, that same neighbor identified Ahn as the man she saw.
Rodrigues-Kaikana's death spurred several people to put up rewards totaling more than $10,000 for information leading to an arrest.
Ahn, who is listed on Hawai'i martial arts Web sites as a freelance kickboxer, was arrested Friday at his home in lower Makiki. Court records show he has four prior convictions, including one for assault and another for unauthorized entry into a motor vehicle. He was also cited for several traffic violations.
Last night, Rodrigues said he was satisfied that Ahn's bail was high enough that he didn't expect him to be able to post bail.
"Today makes two weeks since this happened," Rodrigues said. "I feel much relief now that he's not going to get away with it. I'm very happy on that part. It had to be one cold-blooded murder. It's so sad."