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Police abuse lawsuit goes to Hawaii federal court

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HILO >> A lawsuit accusing police on the Big Island of using excessive force against a man after a drunken driving arrest has been moved to federal court in Honolulu.

The Hawaii Tribune-Herald reported Tuesday that Hawaii County requested the move because 25-year-old John Tredre of Mountain View is accusing three officers of violating his Fourth Amendment rights under the U.S. Constitution.

“It’s our common practice in the county to refer those cases to federal court,” Deputy Corporation Counsel Michael Udovic said.

The lawsuit accuses Sgt. Darryel Tolentino of kicking and slapping Tredre and Officers Keith Nacis and Crystal Kekela of failing to prevent the abuse.

An administrative review board upheld part of a misconduct complaint against Tolentino. Chief Harry Kubojiri agreed with the findings. Nacis and Kekela did not face discipline.

Tredre was arrested in May 2012, and called his mother to bail him out of jail, according to the lawsuit. The lawsuit says officers laughed at Tredre when his mother said she couldn’t come and Tredre responded by swearing at the officers.

The lawsuit says Nacis entered the room with Tolentino and removed Tredre’s handcuffs. The lawsuit says Tolentino threw Tredre to the ground by his ponytail, kicked and slapped him and yelled obscenities.

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