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Maui man pleads not guilty to attempted murder charge

By Rob Shikina

LAST UPDATED: 5:19 a.m. HST, Mar 31, 2011


A Haiku man pleaded not guilty  in Maui Circuit Court to trying to kill his wife, a Maui Police Department recruit, last month.

Michael Pacheco was charged in a grand jury indictment with second-degree attempted murder. He is being held at Maui Community Correctional Center on $750,000 bail.

Police said the attack began when Pacheco was arguing with his wife inside a home about 6:20 p.m. Feb. 25.

Lt. Wayne Ibarra said Pacheco got upset, held down his wife, and choked her with both hands. She broke free and locked herself in the bathroom, then broke the window to jump out. Pacheco "chased her down and tackled her" outside and punched her in the head, Ibarra said.

While on top of her, he held a knife to her and yelled that he would kill her, Ibarra said.

The woman took the knife away and a neighbor came to her aid, grabbing Pacheco and allowing the woman to run away. Ibarra said the woman went to the hospital for injuries to the head and neck and cuts to her hands from grabbing the knife.

Police arrested Pacheco that day and charged him with abuse of a family member and first-degree terroristic threatening. He was released that day after posting $6,000 bail.

Maui Prosecuting Attorney John Kim said after further investigation, the Prosecutor's Office decided to go with a higher charge. A grand jury returned an indictment charging Pacheco with attempted murder on March 18.

He was arrested Wednesday when he appeared at District Court to answer to the abuse and terroristic threatening charges. He is scheduled to reappear in court on April 4.

Police said Pacheco's wife was in "field officer's training" at the time of the attack and has since returned to work.

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