Kailua Attempted Murder-Suicide May Have Red Flags



Reported by: Ron Mizutani
Email: rmizutani@khon2.com
Last Update: 3/24 7:29 pm


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Kailua Attempted Murder-Suicide May Have Red Flags

A woman attacked at a bowling alley in an attempted murder-suicide is recovering from her injuries. Officials say Teresita Paulo is now in stable condition at Queen's Medical Center.

Paulo suffered critical injuries after her 49-year-old ex-boyfriend, Harlan Bruce Kamekona attacked her at Pali Lanes Tuesday morning, then stabbed himself.

Hawaii's latest domestic violence case has shocked island residents. Many are asking if there were signs leading up to the attempted murder-suicide.

Domestic violence experts say red flags often surface early in a relationship and may have in this one as well.

The family of 49-year-old Harland Bruce Kamekona told KHON2 that he and 38-year-old Teresita Paulo were having problems but nothing prepared them for such a violent crime.

"I still no understand I still like you guys looking for answers yeah," said Kamekona's sister Renee Shook.

Just after 9 a.m. Tuesday police say Kamekona first fired a gun at Paulo but missed. He then pulled out a knife and stabbed her before repeatedly stabbing himself.

"He wanted to kill her!" said Paulo's friend Tina Haight.

The medical examiner says Kamekona died from excessive bleeding due to multiple stab wounds.

"The little I know about this couple the relationships was ending and that is often a time when violence escalates," said Nanci Kreidman of the Domestic Violence Action Center. She says this is especially true if there's an element of control in the relationship. Paulo's friends say that was the case here.

"Possessive of her yeah very," said Yvonne Fernandez.

"Perpetrators realize that their control is in jeopardy and so they reach further out and do something more violent or escalate in their behavior in order to try to retain or regain that control," said Kreidman.

And that includes public displays of rage.

"Perpetrators are focused on their targets, they're focussed on maintaining control over their victims," said Kreidman. "The despair that this man was feeling is evident. He probably felt like he couldn't go on without her."

Other red flags include constant questioning of whereabouts and even trivial things like clothing choices.

"The general perspective is ah that's not so big all couples have problems or all relationships are a little bumpy now and then and so you tend to minimize it or ignore it until something terrible like this happens and you go God what did we miss? What didn't we notice," said Kreidman. "We still continue to minimize red flags."

Responding to them can save lives.

"Domestic violence is real violence and can end in death."

Kreidman says if you or you know someone who may be at risk call any domestic violence outreach program immediately...it could save a life.

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