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Showing posts from December, 2011

Abandoned Property is not "Property of Another" (but Grand Jury Need not know who the Other is to Indict)

State v. Taylor (HSC December 15, 2011)Background. Daniel Taylor was prosecuted by the federal government for violating the Native American Grave Protection Act (NAGPRA), 18 USC § 371. Taylor pleaded guilty for conspiring to sell, use for profit, and transport for sale and profit "Native American cultural items." He was sentenced to eleven months of imprisonment and one year of supervised release. One year later, the State prosecuted Taylor for theft in the first degree. HRS § 708-830(1) and HRS § 708-830.5(1)(a). At the grand jury proceeding, the prosecution called only one witness. Abraham Kaikana was an agent for the Attorney General's Office. Agent Kaikana testified that back in the "1800s," a surveyor named Joseph Swift Emerson was shown Kanupa Cave on the Big Island. Inside the cave, Emerson removed artifacts and sold them to the Bishop Museum and the Peabody Essex Museum in Massachusetts. According to Agent Kaikana, Emerson tagged the items he took f…

Why a Plaintiff Brings a Lawsuit Cannot be Considered by the Jury.

Kobashigawa v. Silva (ICA December 2, 2011)Background. William Kobashigawa was walking across Kamehameha Highway in a crosswalk in Kaneohe, when a truck driven by Joseph Silva hit him. Kobashigawa died. Gina Bailey was a witness. The estate of Kobashigawa and family sued Silva and the City and County of Honolulu. The Kobashigawas claimed negligence, negligent infliction of emotional distress, and loss of consortium. The Kobashigawas alleged that the City was negligent in the design of the highway with poor lighting in the crosswalk. The Kobashigawas settled with Silva and went to trial against the City. At trial, portions of Bailey's deposition were read to the jury. Also at trial, the City was allowed to use evidence on possible motives for bringing the suit. The jury found that the City was not negligent, and the circuit court awarded the City with costs. The Kobashigawas appealed.A Plaintiff's Motives for Bringing a Lawsuit Cannot be Considered by the Jury. At trial, the c…