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Man who fatally stabbed Pahoa woman gets life in prison

A man who “insisted on pleading guilty” to stabbing a woman to death has been sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole.

Curtis Q. Hodges of Shiloh, Illinois, was sentenced Wednesday for stabbing Danielle Caron in downtown Hilo in 2015, the Hawaii Tribune-Herald reported. He pleaded no contest to second-degree murder.

Caron, 49, had been living in Pahoa but became homeless shortly before she was killed.

“The defendant’s actions were violent and senseless,” deputy prosecutor Shannon Kagawa said. “He chose to prey on this woman who was alone and vulnerable, late at night. He didn’t know her. He didn’t have a prior argument with her. But for some reason, something we’ll never understand, he violently stabbed and killed Danielle Caron.”

Hodges’ court-appointed attorney, said the case “was unlike any other homicide case I’ve ever resolved” and told the judge his client “insisted on pleading guilty.”

“He sent multiple letters to the government, essentially confessing. He has been remorseful from the minute I met him,” Stanton Oshiro said.

Oshiro said he disagreed with the reports of three mental health professionals who found Hodges fit to proceed with trial, but added Hodges wouldn’t allow him to further pursue a possible diminished mental capacity defense.

Hodges declined to speak at the proceeding. His plea calls for the state to recommend a 20-year minimum sentence to the Hawaii Paroling Authority.

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