The 26-year-old man whom police arrested after he allegedly threatened a male with a firearm at a suspected game room in Kalihi Monday is scheduled to be retried for murder in the 2010 beating death of a taxicab driver in Waipahu, according to court records.
Police said the suspect, identified in a police arrest log as Kilani Derego, had a gun and threatened a male at the game room at Ohana Grocery, 1104 Palama St. about 3:25 a.m. Monday. A struggle ensued between the two and the firearm discharged twice. Police said there were no gunshot injuries, but a bouncer fought with Derego, who sustained multiple head and face injuries in the altercation. It is unclear whether the bouncer was the male whom Derego initially threatened.
Emergency Medical Services personnel treated Derego and took him to a hospital in serious condition. Police said Derego was still in the hospital this morning.
Officers recovered the pistol at the scene and arrested Derego on suspicion of first-degree terroristic threatening, first-degree reckless endangering and three counts of firearm-related offenses.
In 2012, Circuit Judge Dexter Del Rosario sentenced Derego to life in prison with the possibility of parole in the beating death of taxicab driver Charlys Ty Tang.
Early on May 1, 2010, Derego, then 18, and Michael Robles, 19, entered a cab driven by Tang in Waikiki. They arrived at the Waipahu Times Super Market parking lot when Tang and Derego argued, prosecutors said. Robles testified that Derego assaulted Tang.
Tang was taken in critical condition to Queen’s Medical Center where he died later that day. It was his 41st birthday.
Three years after Del Rosario sentenced Derego to life in prison for the deadly beating, the Hawaii Intermediate Court of Appeals overturned the murder conviction. The court ruled in 2015 that the judge should not have allowed the state to present police statements of Derego’s accomplice, Robles, as evidence.
The appeals court sent the case back to Circuit Court for retrial. According to court records, Derego’s retrial is tentatively set for January.
Prior to his arrest early Monday, he was released from prison in July after posting bail via a $150,000 bond from Aloha Bail Bonds pending the retrial.
Robles is serving a 20-year prison term at Saguaro Correctional Center in Arizona for a manslaughter conviction in connection with Tang’s death.