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For Monday, November 8, 2010

By Star-Advertiser staff


UH gets $20K for genetics program

The College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources at the University of Hawaii-Manoa has received $20,000 from the Monsanto Fund.

The college says the money will support salaries and materials for "Gene-ius Day," a special program that introduces students in grades 4 through 12 to basic genetics and the function of DNA.

The founder and director of Gene-ius Day, Ania Wieczorek, is an associate specialist in the college's Biotechnology Outreach Program.

She says a primary goal of the program is to build a strong understanding of basic genetics at the elementary school level. That way, teachers are able to present increasingly complex biotechnology topics in the upper grades.

Convicted killer denied case review

The U.S. Supreme Court has denied a request by convicted murderer Taryn Christian to have the court review his case, the Maui News reports.

The denial lets stand a 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling earlier this year that Christian is not entitled to a new trial in the 1995 fatal stabbing of a Kihei man.

During his 1997 trial in Circuit Court, Christian was found guilty of second-degree murder of 23-year-old Vilmar Cabaccang, who was stabbed numerous times with a double-bladed knife on July 14, 1995.

That night, Cabaccang and his girlfriend had chased a man who broke into Cabaccang's customized Honda Civic on Kulanihakoi Street in Kihei.

Witnesses identified Christian, 19 at the time, as the man they saw at the crime scene.

Maui County First Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Peter Hanano hailed the high court's decision.

"This entire process has been an ordeal for the Cabaccang family, and perhaps this will provide them with some sense of closure in this long and seemingly endless road to justice," he said.

Car-tanker crash closes Highway 19

An early-morning collision between a sedan and a tanker truck carrying fuel on the Big Island forced the temporary closure of Highway 19 between mile markers 11 and 12 yesterday, firefighters said.

The three people involved were not injured in the crash, which was reported at 2:12 a.m., firefighters said.

The sedan was left with moderate damage, and the Kuwaye Trucking tanker truck had minor damage to the diesel tank and piping.

Firefighters contained a subsequent spill.

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