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Hawaii island man charged in death of toddler under his care

  • COURTESY HAWAII POLICE DEPARTMENT
    Ezekiel Wakinekona
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A Hawaii island man has been arrested and charged in the death of a 3-year-old relative who had been left in his care, police said today.

On Friday, emergency personnel responded to a report of a 3-year-old girl found at home, unconscious with difficulty breathing. She was taken to the North Hawaii Community Hospital, where doctors found bruises on her body. 

Later that night, the child, identified as Marley Makanani of Kamuela, was flown to Kapiolani Medical Center for Women and Children on Oahu. She was pronounced dead at 5:14 p.m. Sunday. 

Ezekiel Wakinekona of Kamuela was initially arrested on suspicion of abuse of a household member. Two other girls, ages 2 and 6, who also lived with him, were taken into protective custody and were also found to have injuries, police said. 

On Sunday night, police charged Wakinekona with manslaughter for the death of Makanani, andwith two counts of abuse of a family or household member for the  injuries on the other two girls. 

His initial court appearance was expected to be today. His bail was set at $60,000. 

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