By JOHN BURNETT
Tribune-Herald staff writer
A handgun registered to the suspect in a slaying late last year on the Hilo Bayfront is the murder weapon, according to documents filed by police.
A ballistics test conducted by the Honolulu Police Department’s Scientific Investigation Section laboratory determined that a Sig Sauer 9-millimeter pistol registered to Mark Anthony Whyne was the firearm used in the fatal shooting of 32-year-old Faafetai Fiu of Hilo, documents state.
The 55-year-old Whyne, who has a Hilo mailbox but no permanent home address, made his initial appearance Friday in Hilo District Court on charges of second-degree murder, use of a firearm in the commission of a felony and carrying a loaded firearm. He was ordered to return on Monday at 2 p.m. for a preliminary hearing by Judge Barbara Takase.
The shooting took place the evening of Dec. 29. At about 8:47 p.m., police received a number of calls of possible gunshots heard in the area of Mooheau Park in downtown Hilo. Responding officers discovered Fiu, who also lived in Hilo but had no permanent address, with apparent gunshot wounds and no pulse. He was pronounced dead on Dec. 30 at 2:14 a.m. at Hilo Medical Center.
An autopsy found that Fiu bled to death due to multiple gunshot wounds.
Documents state that during the investigation into the fatal shooting, police learned that a witness saw “a silver Toyota compact at the scene at the time of the shooting” and that “police were aware of a matching vehicle often seen parked in the Bayfront area.”
Police got a license plate number of a 2010 Toyota Corolla registered to Whyne and ran a firearms check, which found that Whyne had registered firearms, including a Sig Sauer 9-millimeter, the documents stated.
Officers served a search warrant on Whyne on Feb. 4 at the Wailoa Small Boat Harbor in Hilo and found the 9-millimeter in a fanny pack he was wearing and a loaded .22-caliber pistol in his car. Whyne was taken into custody at that point.
Police Lt. Greg Esteban of the Criminal Investigations Section said Thursday that a motive for the shooting is “still being investigated at this point.”
Whyne is in custody without bail at Hawaii Community Correctional Center.
Police are asking anyone with information about this case or who may have witnessed the shooting to contact Detective Robert Almeida at 961-2386 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or Detective Norbert Serrao at 961-2383 or email@example.com.
Those who prefer anonymity may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.
Email John Burnett at firstname.lastname@example.org.