Big Island Police Searching for Man with Bugs Bunny Tattoo on Back… Again

Hawaiʻi Island police are searching *edit* AGAIN *edit* for a 32-year-old Puna man wanted for three warrants.

Matthew Keone Tilfas

Matthew Keoni Tilfas

Matthew Keoni Tilfas is wanted on a $1,000 bench warrant for contempt of court, a $150 bench warrant for failure to appear in court and a no-bail warrant for violating terms of supervised release.

He described as 5-foot-5,160 pounds with short black hair, brown eyes and possibly a mustache and goatee. His last known address was in Hawaiian Acres. He is also known as “Matt” and “Jenning.”

He has several tattoos:

  • Bugs Bunny on his back
  • A large cross and the name “Keoni” on his upper left arm
  • A series of triangles on his left forearm
  • A rose and the name “Courtney” on his left inner forearm
  • The name “TILFAS” on his abdomen

Police ask that anyone with information on his whereabouts call the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311.

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo or 329-8181 in Kona and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000. Crime Stoppers is a volunteer program run by ordinary citizens who want to keep their community safe. Crime Stoppers doesn’t record calls or subscribe to caller ID. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

Hirono, Kim and Kenoi Announce Expanded Social Security Services at West Hawaii Civic Center

After working for 16 months to increase Social Security Administration (SSA) service for West Hawaii residents, Senator Mazie K. Hirono joined SSA Regional Commissioner Grace Kim and Hawaii County Mayor Billy Kenoi to announce expanded Social Security services for residents at the West Hawaii Civic Center.

West Hawaii Civic Center

West Hawaii Civic Center

In November, the Social Security Administration announced it would end monthly Kona office hours due to budget constraints, forcing West Hawaii kupuna to make a four-hour roundtrip drive to meet with representatives.

Beginning August 22, residents will be able to go the West Hawaii Civic Center on the second and fourth Thursday of each month from 9am to 1pm to meet with SSA representatives using the new video conferencing system.

“This announcement is great news for Hawaii Island kupuna and shows that when we work together, we can make meaningful differences in people’s lives,” Hirono said. “This video conferencing service will greatly ease the ability of our kupuna to receive the Social Security services they have earned. I greatly appreciate the efforts of the Social Security Administration, Mayor Kenoi, as well as AARP Hawaii, the Hawaii Executive Office on Aging’s Sage PLUS program, and Hawaiian Telcom for getting this done.”

Hirono led the effort to coordinate with Hawaii County and a number of volunteer groups, including the Hawaii Island state librarians, AARP Hawaii, Sage PLUS, RSVP, and Medicare Patrol – to make the video conferencing service a reality for West Hawaii residents. At the urging of West Hawaii constituents and AARP Hawaii, Hirono initially contacted the SSA in April 2012 to address reports of crowding and long lines at the SSA monthly contact stations and to urge the agency to expand its monthly face-to-face Kona visits by Hilo SSA staff.

After the SSA announced it would end these monthly visits, Hirono continued to push for video conferencing services that wouldn’t require Hilo SSA staff to travel to Kona and worked closely with community leaders to execute a formal agreement and coordinate the location, service dates, and technical installation.

At today’s event, Hirono joined SSA Regional Commissioner Barbara Kim Stanton and Mayor Kenoi to thank the volunteer groups and Hawaiian Telcom for their partnership in bringing this valuable service to the West Hawaii community.

“Mahalo to all the partners for working together to help our West Hawai’i seniors access the Social Security services they depend upon. We’re happy to welcome this valuable community service to the West Hawai’i Civic Center,” said Mayor Billy Kenoi.

“Assistance made available via this video conferencing arrangement will be an economic lifeline for West Hawaii residents,” said AARP Hawaii State Director Barbara Kim Stanton. “Nearly a third of older Hawaii residents rely on Social Security for 50 percent or more of their family income. Our low- and middle-income seniors are even more reliant on Social Security’s earned benefit, typically receiving nearly three-quarters of their income from this vital program.

“AARP Hawaii is enormously grateful for the leadership and commitment of our community partners – the Social Security Administration, Mayor Billy Kenoi, and especially Senator Mazie Hirono, for responding to and working with AARP volunteers to make this service a reality,” Stanton added.

While Pamela Cunningham of the Hawaii Executive Office on Aging said, “The Executive Office on Aging’s Sage PLUS Program is inspired by the community volunteers and agencies of West Hawaii that have committed to this program to help their neighbors.”

“We’re proud to be helping as the technology partner on this innovative solution enabling West Hawaii residents to communicate ‘face-to-face’ with the Social Security Administration,” said Paul Krueger, Hawaiian Telcom’s Vice President – Sales & Product Marketing.

Mauna Kea Human Remains Identified as Missing Man

Hawaiʻi Island police have identified human remains discovered last week at a remote location at the 12,000-foot elevation of Mauna Kea.

A view from a window inside the visitors information center

A view from a window inside the visitors information center

The remains were identified through dental records as Brian Patrick Murphy of Plymouth, Michigan, who was 67 when he was reported missing from that area in December 2007.


First Known Table Coral Discovered Off Oahu

NOAA scientists report the discovery of the first known colony of table coral off of the south shore of O’ahu in Hawai’i.  A report on the discovery was published last month in the Bulletin of Marine Science.

Table coral of genus Acropora (Acroporidae) at French Frigate Shoals, Northwestern Hawaiian Islands

Table coral of genus Acropora (Acroporidae) at French Frigate Shoals, Northwestern Hawaiian Islands

Given its common name due to its flat-topped, table-like shape, table coral (Acropora cytherea) is one of the primary reef-building corals throughout most of the tropical Pacific, but it has never been observed in waters off O’ahu — until now, researchers said. The coral, estimated to be 14 years old, was found at a depth of 60 feet during a training dive.

“This discovery represents a significant contribution to the diversity of O’ahu reefs,” said Daniel Wagner, Ph.D., NOAA research specialist with Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument. “Hawai’i may be in the process of being colonized by table coral from Johnston Atoll or other neighboring tropical archipelagos.”

Table coral is abundant at Johnston Atoll, 800 miles southeast of Honolulu. However, it is rare in Hawai’i, where its distribution is limited to French Frigate Shoals and neighboring atolls in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands.

The coral colony was discovered by scientists last November during survey dives using closed-circuit rebreathers off the south shore of O’ahu. Rebreathers recycle the gases that divers breathe, removing carbon dioxide and actively managing oxygen levels, thereby allowing for extended dive times and more efficient decompression at depths not accessible using conventional SCUBA.



Big Island Police Arrest 25-Year-Old Hilo Woman on Multiple Theft and Forgery Charges

Hawaiʻi Island police arrested a 25-year-old Hilo woman at the Hilo airport Tuesday on multiple theft and forgery charges.

Suzy Cho Chun

Suzy Cho Chun

Suzy Cho Chun of Keaʻau was being investigated in connection with 28 forged checks from her former place of business. The checks, totaling more than $9,000, were cashed at various financial institutions around the island.

Police investigators received an anonymous tip that Chun, who was off island, would be returning to Hawaiʻi Island via the Hilo airport on Tuesday. She was arrested there at 2 p.m.

Chun was charged the same day with 29 counts of theft and 28 counts of forgery. Her bail was set at $89,750. She was also arrested on two counts of revocation of supervised release based on no-bail bench warrants issued by District Court.

She is being held at Hawaiʻi Community Correctional Center pending a preliminary hearing in District Court scheduled for Thursday afternoon (August 8).

Victims Identified in Mountain View Crash that Killed Two

A 36-year-old Mountain View man and his male passenger died on Wednesday (August 7) from injuries they received in a single-vehicle crash on North Glenwood Road in Mountain View.

Responding to a 3:45 p.m. call, Puna Patrol officers determined that a 1999 Honda CRV multi-purpose vehicle was traveling east on North Glenwood Road when it ran off the roadway and struck a utility pole and a tree.

Both the driver, who was identified as Patrick W. Agcalon of Mountain View, and his male passenger, who has not yet been identified, died on scene.

(UPDATE: The 54-year old man who died from injuries he received in a motor vehicle collision Wednesday night in Mountain View has been identified as Dino G. Capello of Mountain View.)

The passenger was wearing his seatbelt, but the driver was not. Police believe that speed and alcohol were both factors in this crash.

Traffic Enforcement Unit officers have initiated a negligent homicide and coroner’s inquest investigation and have ordered an autopsy to determine the exact cause of death.

The name of the second victim is being withheld pending positive identification and notification of the next of kin.

This is the 21st traffic fatality on Hawaiʻi Island this year compared with 23 at this time last year.