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Man said he killed girlfriend in journal found near hanging body

By Rob Shikina

LAST UPDATED: 03:10 p.m. HST, Jan 21, 2014

Hawaii County police say an Alaska man confessed to killing his pregnant girlfriend in a journal found near his hanging body earlier this month.

Brittany-Jane Royal, 25, of California, was found in waters off Kalapana on May 28 and authorities said she had been strangled.

Police said her boyfriend, Boaz David Johnson, 22, was a suspect in her death, but could not locate him.

On Jan. 2, a body was found hanging from a tree in Kalapana and was later identified through DNA and dental records as Johnson.

Hawaii County police said a composition book found near Johnson's body had three handwritten pages by a writer who identified himself as Johnson, confessing to strangling Royal during a dispute and throwing her body in the ocean.

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Hapa_Haole_Boy wrote:
Case solved. Sad situation.
on January 21,2014 | 01:35PM
HawaiiCheeseBall wrote:
Yep, pretty much sums it up.
on January 21,2014 | 04:33PM
skydog1 wrote:
This is such poor reporting it's ridiculous. previously (months ago) the police said that they had reason to suspect this guy. now they are saying they found a written confession near a body that is supposedly his. do the two support each other? otherwise, on the basis of this story, one cant be sure what to believe. thanks star-advertiser for this insight ...
on January 21,2014 | 01:54PM
lance01 wrote:
Agreed. Shouldn't assume anything.
on January 21,2014 | 02:38PM
copperwire9 wrote:
I wonder if it occurred to you to READ the article. Let's try this: "On Jan. 2, a body was found hanging from a tree in Kalapana and was later identified through DNA and dental records as Johnson." How's that?
on January 21,2014 | 03:41PM
DAGR81 wrote:
Too late in the afternoon to confuse people.
on January 21,2014 | 04:58PM
KahinuG wrote:
Royal's body is found in May, Johnson is a suspect primarily cause he's nowhere to be found. Their families think that it's possible they were both killed. Seven months later his body is found and identified via dental records and DNA... meaning the body was badly decomposed. The only thing that's missing in the report is the estimated length of time Johnson has been dead, you can assume that a document examiner has verified the journal was written by Johnson. What's so difficult to follow with the article? DNA taking a couple of weeks is pretty normal.
on January 21,2014 | 04:08PM
mitt_grund wrote:
Kind of takes away from Korean dramas that always get an ID with one strand of hair. In less than two days. Those Korean screenwriters sure know how to out-technology Big Island police But then again, they never really solve Peter Boy Kema or the Dana Ireland cases.
on January 21,2014 | 06:51PM
kiragirl wrote:
Closure for the family. An argument ends up with two deaths. Senseless, meaningless and sad.
on January 21,2014 | 01:55PM
kiragirl wrote:
Forgot to mention she was pregnant too.
on January 21,2014 | 02:01PM
Mei mei wrote:
very sad and tragic.. poor unborn baby :(
on January 21,2014 | 03:51PM
1R1E wrote:
is it possible that they needed to use dental records and DNA to figure out who the body was becuase it was hanging there for a while...?
on January 21,2014 | 01:58PM
GoldenRule wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on January 21,2014 | 02:00PM
Upperkula wrote:
They dont, the Fire Department does that.
on January 21,2014 | 02:04PM
GooglyMoogly wrote:
Hmm...while reading this article, I never would've thought to go after the cops. Excellent trolling, my friend.
on January 21,2014 | 08:46PM
Upperkula wrote:
He found out the baby wasnt his!
on January 21,2014 | 02:05PM
gofigga wrote:
Hey people, Give it a rest OK?. This was a very sad situation. My wish is that they both rest in Peace!
on January 21,2014 | 02:08PM
mjoseph wrote:
What a sad & tragic story!
on January 21,2014 | 02:19PM
aomohoa wrote:
So, did he hang himself? Poor reporting. Is it his hand writing for sure? Maybe someone hung him and wrote the confession to take the heat off of the real murderer. Who knows, but it is all very sad.
on January 21,2014 | 03:01PM
cojef wrote:
More so, poor investigation! The crime was committed some time ago, and only now come with a very sketchy details which appears to have a lot of holes. Like you say, it could be a double homicide with individual who committed the killings still on the loose.
on January 21,2014 | 03:37PM
Mei mei wrote:
the investigation in this appears very suspect and inefficient... don't know if the SA reported it this way, etc. but there certainly are alot of questions... i'm sure these individuals' families want/need answers.
on January 21,2014 | 03:53PM
Kaimiloa wrote:
Body was his. Notebook was his. Admitted strangling girlfriend during a domestic dispute. Handwriting expert matched the writing to other samples written by him. Just because the paper doesn't give a full story doesn't mean that the police didn't do their job.
on January 21,2014 | 07:09PM
aomohoa wrote:
Are you on the case? You seem to have all the answers.
on January 21,2014 | 07:41PM
dlum003 wrote:
on January 21,2014 | 05:41PM
Anonymous wrote:
And everybody was ready to blame da locals.
on January 21,2014 | 06:11PM
llpof wrote:
Yes, this article does not reveal much. For more complete reporting see the Hawaii 24/7 site. According to the article on the 24/7 site, based on police media release: "Investigation revealed that after Royal’s body was found, Johnson said in a telephone conversation with a friend that he and Royal were in good health and were on their way to Hilo. That phone call, in addition to DNA and other evidence found at the crime scene, made Johnson an early suspect in Royal’s murder."
on January 21,2014 | 07:24PM
Eradication wrote:
Sad story. My condolences to both families. All those "malihini" living down in Kalapana, Opihikao, Kahena who were posting accusations on facebook accusing the local Hawaiian tour guide should know that he did a "screen capture" of your posts. Your accusations severely affected his business to the point where he nearly filed for bankruptcy. Now he is taking those captured screens posting to a lawyer to see if he can go after you folks for ruining his business. No one is talking about the outrageous racist climate created by the malihini's down there. Karma...
on January 21,2014 | 08:56PM
pueohonua wrote:
This sounds like a murder cover up. We shouldn't assume that he killed his girlfriend. If and only if the handwriting in the journal is verified as his, can an assumption be made of a murder-suicide. However, it could have been he was forced at gun point to write in his journal then murdered.
on January 21,2014 | 09:11PM
HAJAA1 wrote:
Big Island land is vast, even by mainland standards. He could have gone undiscovered for a year or more.
on January 21,2014 | 09:18PM
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