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Castle graduate on trial in murder of former football teammate

By Nelson Daranciang

POSTED:
LAST UPDATED: 03:35 p.m. HST, Dec 13, 2011


Relatives of both the victim and the defendant filled the courtroom this morning as the murder trial of Makuola Collins got under way in state Circuit Court.

Collins, 27, is on trial for murder in the Jan. 2 shooting death of his former high school classmate, Joel Botelho; and the attempted murder of Botelho's younger brother, Leon.

Collins and Joel Botelho were also former teammates for Castle High School's football team on which Botelho was a star quarterback.

"The evidence will show that Joel Botelho was unarmed, and that the defendant, Maukuola Collins intentionally or knowingly shot and killed Joel Botelho," prosecutor Wayne Tashima said in opening arguments this morning.

In his opening statement, Collins' attorney, David Hayakawa, said, "There is massive reasonable doubt about who fired the gun."  

Leon Botelho has said that he fired the first shot in an exchange of gunfire, and Hayawaka said he was the only one police said tested positive for gunshot residue.






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