Murder suspect escapes custody in Honolulu
HONOLULU (AP) — A Hawaii inmate being held on second-degree murder, firearms and drug charges escaped custody Wednesday while traveling from jail to court in Honolulu for a hearing, public safety officials said.
Spokeswoman Toni Schwartz of the Hawaii Department of Public Safety said Teddy Munet escaped from his transport after arriving at Circuit Court in Honolulu on Wednesday morning. It’s not clear how Munet escaped, Schwartz said.
She says the 29-year-old Oahu Community Correctional Center suspect is wearing a black hoodie sweatshirt to perhaps hide a belly chain and handcuffs. It’s not clear how Munet obtained the sweatshirt.
Schools in the area were put into lockdown, The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported.
Schwartz says Munet has been seen in Honolulu’s downtown area, near the state Capitol. The area is home to many state and federal offices, as well as historic landmarks like Iolani Palace, the official residence of Hawaii’s monarchy.
A booking photo released by public safety officials shows Munet with short, curly hair, scruffy facial hair and a large skull tattoo on the left side of his neck and left collar bone.
Munet is accused of killing a friend in a state park in Kailua in July. The friend, William Fallau, was found dead with a bullet in the back of his neck at Kawainui State Park.
Fallau’s relatives said at the time that Fallau asked his father to let Munet live in their garage in Kaneohe. Munet stayed there until his arrest.
Munet’s attorney, Edward Harada of the state public defender’s office, said the hearing on Wednesday was on a routine motion asking for police records related to the case.
Harada said Munet has pleaded not guilty and intends to take the case to trial, which is set for April.
Harada told The Associated Press that has not changed despite the escape.
“Of course, he has to be apprehended and we’ll take it from there,” Harada said.