Updated 

Police ID suspected murder victim


UPDATE: The human remains found in South Kohala on Monday have been identified through dental records as 37-year-old Robert Keawe Lopaka Ryder of Kailua-Kona, who had been reported missing.

Ryder’s family reported on Jan. 17 that they had not heard from him since Thanksgiving 2013.

During an autopsy conducted on Wednesday, the medical examiner determined that the cause of death was blunt force trauma to the head and that the manner of death was homicide.

Detectives from the Area II Criminal Investigations Section are investigating the case as a murder.

Detectives located the human remains at approximately 5:30 p.m. Monday on vacant land between Queen Kaahumanu Highway and Puako Beach Drive.

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An autopsy conducted Wednesday on human remains found in South Kohala on Monday found the cause of death was blunt force trauma to the head and the manner of death was homicide.

Kona Criminal Investigations Section detectives have reclassified the case from a coroner’s inquest to a murder. They are attempting to identify the victim through forensics.

Detectives located the human remains at approximately 5:30 p.m. Monday on vacant land between Queen Kaahumanu Highway and Puako Beach Drive.

Hawaii News Now reported on Wednesday evening that the remains may be those of 37-year-old musician Robert Keawe “Lopaka” Ryder, who was reportedly last seen on Thanksgiving Day, although police have not confirmed that.

 

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