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Hearing set for man accused of crime spree

  • Kenneth Makanani.

A preliminary hearing for the 33-year-old man accused of a crime spree last month, including the holdup of a Waipahu Tesoro gas station with a shotgun, will be held in federal court on Nov. 20.

Kenneth Makanani was initially arrested by police Sunday for allegedly robbing the Tesoro gas station Oct. 30; the Pearl City Market Oct. 9; and the Roadrunner Liquor Store the same day. In all three instances Makanani used a weapon, police said. He was being held on three counts of first-degree robbery.

On Monday, Makanani’s case was transferred to federal authorities and he was charged with three counts of interference with commerce by threats or violence. He is being held in the federal detention center.

Makanani will appear before U.S. Magistrate Kevin Chang at 2 p.m. Nov. 20.

In the six-page criminal complaint filed in federal court Monday, Makanani is said to have robbed the Tesoro Gas Station at 94-050 Farrington Hwy at 4 a.m. on Oct. 30. He allegedly took $37 in cash and two packs of USA Gold cigarettes. 

Makanani, who had taken off his yellow T-shirt and used it to cover his head and face, allegedly told the clerk to “open the register or I’ll shoot you in the head.”

His fingerprints were found on the counter top in the gas station.

Makanani also was identified by a clerk who was working in the Pearl City Market Oct. 9.

Makanani allegedly used a white T-shirt as a mask around his face and demanded that she open the cash register. Brandishing a handgun, the suspect got away with $1,000 in cash. 

After taking the cash the suspect fled in a four-door white Honda with a piece of cardboard covering the license plate.

Two hours later Makanani allegedly robbed the Roadrunner Liquor Store at 94-266 Waipahu St. taking $200 in cash.

This time Makanani allegedly used a black T-shirt to cover his face and pointed a gun at the cashier, saying “Give me all the money” two or three times.

In both the Pearl City market and Waipahu liquor robberies, store surveillance video tapes helped police identify the suspect.

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