|Katherine Kealoha and her husband arrive at court.|
Years of experience have taught us that prosecutors, judges, and law-enforcement officials are among the most crooked, inept, and dishonest creatures on earth. The Missouri cases of Scott J. Wells, Dorial Green-Beckham, and Carol Tovich Shuler (my wife) provide ample evidence. More powerful evidence has turned up in, of all places, Hawaii.
Corrupt individuals with ties to the U.S. "justice system:" rarely are held accountable for their misdeeds. But the case of Katherine Kealoha in Honolulu is an exception to that rule. From a report last week in the Hawaii Tribune-Herald:
Two U.S. marshals led former deputy Honolulu prosecutor Katherine Kealoha out of a courtroom Friday when a U.S. judge ordered her detained after a jury found her guilty of conspiracy and he expressed concern that she could try to obstruct justice before being sentenced.
Kealoha left her purse with her defense attorney as the marshals approached to take her into custody after the bail hearing.
She “lies as easily as she draws breath” and will do anything to avoid consequences, prosecutors said in court documents seeking her detention.
“This defendant is a walking crime spree,” Michael Wheat, a special federal prosecutor, told the judge in court, saying she holds sway with police and has tampered with grand jury witnesses in the past.
What did Kealoha do? A jury convicted her and her husband, former police chief Louis Kealoha, of conspiracy and obstruction of justice in a plot to frame Katherine Kealoha’s uncle Gerard Puana for the theft of a mailbox to discredit him in a family financial dispute. Two police officers also were convicted for their roles in the scheme:
Prosecutors said during the trial that the Kealohas were afraid the uncle would reveal fraud that enriched the couple’s lavish life. Maintaining their power and prestige was a motive for the framing, prosecutors said.
Katherine Kealoha will remain in federal custody until two additional corruption cases against her are resolved. From HawaiiNewsNow:
A federal judge called Katherine Kealoha a “corrupting influence” Friday before ordering that she be detained pending her sentencing in October and two upcoming federal trials. The decision came a day after she was found guilty in one of Hawaii’s biggest public corruption trials.
In the court hearing, Judge Michael Seabright said Kealoha has shown she’s willing to tamper with witnesses in an effort to hide her schemes.
Trying to obstruct justice, he said, is Kealoha’s “bread and butter.”
Following the judge’s order, U.S. Marshals flanked Kealoha, who did not show any emotion as she was escorted out of the courtroom.
She’ll be held at the Honolulu federal detention center, where initially she’ll be placed in isolation ― standard procedure given that she’s a former law enforcement official.
Kealoha should eventually have plenty of her law-enforcement brethren providing company behind bars, and I know where investigators could start -- right here in Southwest Missouri, with a trip to the state capital (Jefferson City), and an extended stay in Alabama. Kealoha hardly is a "lone wolf."