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Mistrial declared in Ala Moana Center murder trial

By Star Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 3:30 p.m. HST, Oct 3, 2013

After a little more than a day of deliberation, the jurors in the Jacob Le murder trial told a state judge this afternoon that they are deadlocked and additional deliberation will not result in a unanimous verdict.

Circuit Judge Rom Trader declared a mistrial and scheduled a hearing in two weeks to set the calender for a new trial.

Le, 27, was on trial for murder for the stabbing death of his friend Brent Keolakalani "Ola" Kanae exactly one year ago today.

A passerby found Kanae, 23, coughing up blood, in a second-floor stairwell of Ala Moana Center. 

Kanae had been stabbed three times in the chest and bled to death from his injuries.

Honolulu police said that Le, after initially denying involvement in Kanae's death, confessed to killing his best friend. 

Le's lawyer says police tricked Le into giving a false, unrecorded confession and failed to follow up on other leads. Deputy Public Defender Lee Hayakawa also told the jury in closing arguments yesterday that Le does not possess the size and strength needed to overpower and stab the larger Kanae.

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