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Federal agent returns to isles for lengthy trial

Jury selection in Deedy’s high-profile murder case is expected to take weeks

By Ken Kobayashi

LAST UPDATED: 10:35 p.m. HST, Jul 17, 2013

State Department special agent Christopher Deedy has returned to Honolulu for jury selection this month and trial this summer on charges he murdered a Kailua man at a McDonald’s restaurant in Waikiki in 2011.

Deedy appeared at a court hearing Friday to prepare for jury selection, which is scheduled to start April 15 before Circuit Judge Karen Ahn.

Opening statements for the trial are scheduled for July 1 to accommodate what is expected to be weeks of jury selection because of the massive publicity in the high-profile case.

In addition, Ahn is scheduled to go on three weeks of vacation in June.

Ahn said the vacation was planned before last summer and paid for prior to the scheduling of the trial this year.

Deedy, 28, is charged with murder and a firearms violation in a case that drew widespread coverage with national and international media here for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation conference.
Deedy was in town to provide security for diplomats.

He was off duty when he shot Kollin Elderts at about 2:45 a.m. Nov. 5, 2011, at the fast-food restaurant on Kuhio Avenue.

Deedy posted $250,000 bond for his release and received permission to reside at his Arlington Va., home and work at a State Department desk job.

At Friday’s hearing, Deedy affirmed that he agreed to the withdrawal last month of his motion seeking to dismiss the charges under the U.S. Constitution’s Supremacy Clause. The provision prohibits state prosecution of federal law enforcement officers acting in the scope of their duties.

In court papers filed this week citing reasons for the withdrawal, Deedy’s attorney Brook Hart said the hearing on the motion would amount to a minitrial, which would run for several weeks with testimony from many of the same witnesses scheduled to testify at trial.

Hart said Deedy did not have the financial resources to afford bringing in his witnesses from the mainland and housing them for what essentially would be two lengthy trials.

Hart, however, said Deedy still retains the right to raise the defense at trial that he was acting as a federal law enforcement agent to protect himself and others.

The trial could take as long as two months. The defense has submitted a list of more than 140 potential witnesses.

As outlined in pretrial court papers, city prosecutors maintain that Deedy was not acting in any official capacity.

They contend Deedy appeared to be intoxicated after a night of drinking and bar-hopping, threatened to shoot Elderts and kicked him before firing the fatal shot to Elderts’ chest.

The defense contends that a drunken Elderts was the aggressor who called Deedy a “f--- haole” and challenged him to a fight. Deedy identified himself as a law enforcement officer, but Elderts attacked Deedy and tried to grab his gun before the fatal shot, according to the defense.

Jury selection is expected to be lengthy, with hundreds of potential jurors summoned to court for questioning on whether they can be impartial in view of the media coverage.

Hart has maintained that the questioning is required because the jurors would be faced with “highly charged and deep-seated political, social and emotional issues.”

They include, he said in a pretrial filing, the “racial underpinnings” expressed in comments to news stories. The comments cited by Hart include a description of Deedy as a mainland Caucasian killing a “local man” and a suggestion that Elderts was a “racist bully.”

At Friday’s hearing, the lawyers reviewed responses from potential jurors seeking to be excused for reasons that include medical issues.

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MalamaKaAina wrote:
Plea deal and probation or removal to fed court and dismissal?
on April 6,2013 | 02:34AM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
Deedy withdrew his frivolous motion that the State of Hawaii could not prosecute a intoxicated federal agent acting under the scope of the small man syndrome law. In other words the Feds and his bosses did not care to fly from Virginia to "get his back". Even if Deedy paid their way, they still would not "get his back". They know he had small armed man attitude. Deedy should have just left his phallus back at the hotel and just go drinking. At least Elderts would have his mug shot and arrest in the SA, with a picture of victim Deedy with two black eyes and missing teeth.
on April 6,2013 | 02:36AM
peanutgallery wrote:
DIdn't know you were here. You wil be testifying for the state, rght?
on April 6,2013 | 04:24AM
false wrote:
Evidence will show the Deedy physically started the conflict when he went after Elderts. Everywhere on the planet someone thinks someone else is "less than." There are wars over it. But in civilization we don't kick one another for "name calling" let alone shoot them. Guns are such an equalizer.
on April 6,2013 | 06:04AM
kailuabred wrote:
I guess you will be testifying also. Must be nice to know what happened without hearing any evidence.
on April 6,2013 | 11:31AM
nodaddynotthebelt wrote:
Are you really a teacher? Your comment that "evidence" will show that Deedy physically started the conflict is pure speculation. The video or evidence was not shown and we are only going by statements made about it in the news. If you are, in fact, a teacher, you should know that the statements are just that, statements. Their veracity has not been proven and you are probably not an actual witness to the crime. No wonder our kids perform so poorly. And because of teachers like you I send my kids to private school. And because of you I have to work two jobs just so that I can do that. And, while we struggle to make ends meet you get a raise. Many of us are seeing our pay decrease and our taxes increase. And I foresee our taxes going up just so that you can get your raise.
on April 7,2013 | 12:30AM
joewilly wrote:
Excellent analysis. Alcohol and guns do not mix. Elderts was high: so was Deedy. If Deedy was not packing heat he would have just gotten an a** kicking, and both guys would have just spent the night in jail, end of story.
on April 6,2013 | 07:11AM
allie wrote:
Elderts would have been trhge one beaten. But neither man is in anyone admirable. Elderts had a long criminal career. Same old, same old out here
on April 6,2013 | 08:19AM
kalai wrote:
go back to ND and learn to spell.
on April 6,2013 | 10:54AM
wiliki wrote:
It is to be proved.... we really don't know much except that IIRC Elderts blood test showed that he was drunk?
on April 6,2013 | 12:52PM
stingray65 wrote:
But which one has a priors! Or rap sheet?
on April 6,2013 | 02:33PM
scooters wrote:
So you were there and know for a fact that Deedy was drinking?You saw him? Only way locals fight is to "Gang Up" on one person.
on April 6,2013 | 07:43PM
Grimbold wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on April 6,2013 | 08:19AM
cojef wrote:
Ahh, we are talking about bullying. Some individuals never grow up. Was there any of that here, must be, cuz there were racial slurs expressed, possibly by either party, then escalated into fistcuffs, and finally the gun. Wondering if Deedy is on paid leave or leave of absence from his State Department job for this hearing? Whether exonerated or not, his career is shot, and he will probably not be able ever carry a firearm in his future jobs. If convicted it is moot.
on April 6,2013 | 10:47AM
wiliki wrote:
In our society people are innocent until proven guilty. A lot depends on the jury. Too bad Deedy's funds wont permit what is essentially two trials.
on April 6,2013 | 12:54PM
Changalang wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on April 6,2013 | 01:48PM
false wrote:
u r well read and well diversified my friend.
on April 6,2013 | 06:41PM
Changalang wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on April 6,2013 | 01:20PM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
True on dat Chang...KH day in schools are a thing of the past. Kids now are pretty cool with each other. They are much more mature on this matter. It's the parents that keep the urban myth going with mainland media. To my recollection, I have never heard of a H being killed in school. For that matter any race!
on April 6,2013 | 02:51PM
false wrote:
It exists everywhere, the animosity toward every ethnicity. The latest arrivals are the front runners for attack. H will always be on the horizon because of history and arrogance. Just a little humility would go a long way.
on April 6,2013 | 03:00PM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
Grimbold ,the one without the gun is the weaker one, Like Elderts. The tape will show who threw the first kick. Like I said, the small phallus with the gun always cuss the loudest.
on April 6,2013 | 02:42PM
false wrote:
Wow! Laulau. Nailed it!
on April 6,2013 | 03:00PM
scooters wrote:
Typical "Local Attitude" there NanakuliBoss.. call 1-800-555-Wa,Wa,Wa
on April 6,2013 | 07:40PM
Mythman wrote:
Woulda, shoulda, coulda equals zero. reality is what counts.
on April 6,2013 | 03:26AM
Recce wrote:
"In addition, Ahn is scheduled to go on three weeks of vacation in June. Ahn said the vacation was planned before last summer and paid for prior to the scheduling of the trial this year."


So if the judge's vacation was planned and paid for "prior to the scheduling of the trial," WHY was the trial scheduled to take place during her vacation?
on April 6,2013 | 04:52AM
wiliki wrote:
True... perhaps there are better judges for this case than Ahn?
on April 6,2013 | 12:55PM
Not to worry guys. We have stupid judges in Hawaii. The mainland people are laughing at us. You watch, Deedy is going to get away with this. I sure would like to review the store video.
on April 6,2013 | 05:20AM
sayer wrote:
Seems like with video of the shooting, the case/evidencd will be pretty crystal clear.
on April 6,2013 | 05:29AM
false wrote:
on April 6,2013 | 06:05AM
livinginhawaii wrote:
I still do not understand why the video is not being released to the public. They have already disclosed and proven that Elderts was an aggressive chronic so the jury pool will already be aware of that evidence.
on April 6,2013 | 06:17AM
Changalang wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on April 6,2013 | 07:17AM
allie wrote:
agree...no guns. I see guys like Elderts all the time late night in Waikiki. They are offensive but not really dangerous. Cultural misunderstandings can be deadly if guns are involved.
on April 6,2013 | 08:17AM
wiliki wrote:
Our schools are failing if we have so many guys like Elderts....
on April 6,2013 | 12:58PM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
Wiliki, if that's the case, all schools are failing nation wide.
on April 6,2013 | 02:55PM
false wrote:
Parents are failing their kids to have anyone who is a "chronic" or bullies. Teachers don't have that influence on students. They are clever at crowd attacks in the classroom. It's a fine thread of control for instruction and a lot of respect reciprocity being negotiated constantly. If not, instruction doesn't happen. The culture of the kumu doesn't change the core value of the student in the family. The family culture is what they take to the "street."
on April 6,2013 | 03:05PM
stingray65 wrote:
Guns solve the problem. Shot him, he is dead, no problem!
on April 6,2013 | 02:39PM
scooters wrote:
What crime? So his guilty already!
on April 6,2013 | 07:46PM
localguy wrote:
More shibai from Deedy, "he still retains the right to raise the defense at trial that he was acting as a federal law enforcement agent to protect himself and others." How many times have we read he was in direct violation of federal guidelines when he was off duty, drinking, and packing his weapon. Clearly a failure to follow instructions from supervisors, a major failure for any federal law enforcement officer. Appears he picks and chooses what rules he will follow. Looks like he may have a new retirement plan, 3 hots and a cot at the Federal Hilton next to the airport. Great narrow views, healthcare and who knows, he may even meet some old friends he put away during his career. Oh will that be a nice reunion. Yes, Deedy could have it all, good friends to help him fit into his new lifestyle, especially at night. Be afraid of prison Deedy, be very afraid.
on April 6,2013 | 06:22AM
RetiredWorking wrote:
Hey, that works for me, localguy. I pray for a swift, trial and jail time @ OCCC. Payback's a beach.
on April 6,2013 | 07:18AM
Changalang wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on April 6,2013 | 07:35AM
allie wrote:
I prefer federal agents. HPD is just not very effective
on April 6,2013 | 08:17AM
Changalang wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on April 6,2013 | 09:39AM
allie wrote:
interesting post..thanks.
on April 6,2013 | 10:03AM
stingray65 wrote:
HPD are great ! Because they have to deal with so many different ethnic groups on the island. However, they need to go to target practice more often, so they won't miss the target!!
on April 6,2013 | 02:43PM
false wrote:
We have a Federal center for incarceration. Guess he would go to one of the "hotel-spa" camps on the mainland.
on April 6,2013 | 03:06PM
soundofreason wrote:
Here's what I know. Elderts was shot on Nov 5 2011. On Nov 6 2011 and beyond, there was one less person walking around with drugs in their system. Deedy will only be in town for a couple of months during his trial. I have a limited amount of time to take this man out and buy him a drink as he is what every Dirty Harry movie is all about.
on April 6,2013 | 07:30AM
soundofreason wrote:
........and "Dirty Deedy" has a much better ring to with with it's synonymous inference as a bonus. I want the movie role.
on April 6,2013 | 07:54AM
Changalang wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on April 6,2013 | 09:52AM
soundofreason wrote:
on April 6,2013 | 10:51AM
chariie1 wrote:
If he was acting under any official capacity his employer would have had many lawyers there to defend his innocence.
on April 6,2013 | 09:08AM
chariie1 wrote:
The idea that the federal agent is a better person is sad and it should be recognized that all he was on drugs too........ alcohol. He fled the scene..... he certainly is no role model.
on April 6,2013 | 09:12AM
BRock wrote:
I wonder where you get the notion that Deedy fled the scene.
on April 6,2013 | 11:24AM
Maneki_Neko wrote:
If you get called for jury duty on this one you better be retired or jobless and have nothing else to do for several months. That or be really creative with your excuses. Wearing a tinfoil hat and mumbling about conspiracies, aliens and hating the Feds might do it.
on April 6,2013 | 09:29AM
mayihavesumor wrote:
Judge Ahn has been uneven and capricious in decisions she has handed down. Like many of the judges in Hawaii she has risen to the level of her incompetency.
on April 6,2013 | 09:52AM
mongoosa wrote:
"Being an officer in Hawaii is similar to being trained for foreign service if one is not indigenous to Hawaii. The cultural nuances that keep a lid on things down there only occur because of the highly trained skills of command and enforcement in that district. " What police department are you dreaming of.....are you Louis Kealoha? If they had such a dream team, there would be much less crime in Waikiki. It is rampant and out of control with the low-lifes winning the war.
on April 6,2013 | 11:01AM
wiliki wrote:
Looks like Deedy feels he's innocent. Would have been a deal otherwise.
on April 6,2013 | 12:49PM
The_Dude_Abides wrote:
He's Illuminati...they can't touch him...
on April 6,2013 | 03:44PM
BRock wrote:
For me the feeling is that with Elderts gone permanentlly, the streets are safer for me, my friends, and family.
on April 6,2013 | 04:30PM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
Brock, when Deedy is locked up, the streets will be much safer for the local population.
on April 6,2013 | 08:02PM
false wrote:
Bottom line, it takes physical pressure on a pistol trigger to release a bullet. Was the fight worth it to extinguish a human being? All the evidence will be presented by the State and Defense and then analyzed by the jury. Verdict: Not yet.
on April 6,2013 | 06:43PM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
Always the unarmed "justified" excuse "Your Honor ,he was going for MY gun".
on April 6,2013 | 07:53PM
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