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Murderer denied parole after 40 years in prison

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The Hawaii Paroling Authority denied parole to a 65-year-old man who has been serving time for the past 40 years for the murder of an 18-year-old woman.

William K. Medeiros will have another chance for parole in February next year and every subsequent year, said Paroling Authority Chairman Tommy Johnson.

"HPA was not convinced that he could comply with the current conditions of parole if granted the privilege of release on parole," Johnson said. 

Medeiros waived representation by an attorney and represented himself. He will remain at the high-security federal prison in Pollock, La.

Medeiros was originally sentenced to life without parole in May 1971 after pleading guilty to the murder of  friend Mitzi Iso Kotzbach, knowing his sentence would be life without parole. In December 1970, she was found dead in Waianae.

He won a chance to be resentenced 10 years ago under a 1975 law to equalize prison sentences among inmates. The Hawaii Paroling Authority decided that he should serve at least 40 years before he is eligible for parole.

After the law changed, Medeiros’ case was reviewed in 1976. Court documents show the court found "the sentence presently imposed on the defendant is a fair one."

In 2001, Medeiros argued that he was denied a formal hearing before the court following the law change. Former Circuit Judge Michael Town granted him a formal resentencing, which opened the door for the Paroling Authority to give him the chance for parole after 40 years.

In the 1970s, state prison officials placed Medeiros into the federal prison system because he was causing trouble, a Department of Public Safety official said. He remains at the high-security prison in Pollock, La.

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