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No bail for brother of teen killed by Honolulu police; judge sets trial date

  • CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STARADVERTISER.COM
                                Maruo Sykap appears in Circuit Court via video from OCCC.

    CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STARADVERTISER.COM

    Maruo Sykap appears in Circuit Court via video from OCCC.

A circuit judge scheduled a jury trial in September for Maruo Sykap, the older brother of 16-year-old Iremamber Sykap, who was fatally shot by police April 5.

Maruo Sykap, 21, appeared Thursday at his arraignment at Circuit Court via video conferencing from the Oahu Community Correctional Center.

An Oahu grand jury returned an indictment against Sykap in April, charging him with first-degree robbery in connection with an April 22 case at Old Stadium Park in Moiliili. He allegedly used a dangerous instrument to rob a man of his valuables.

Sykap was also indicted for second-degree assault in an April 24 case where he allegedly assaulted a 20-year-old woman at the inter- section of Kalakaua Avenue and Philip Street, the site where his brother was killed.

A makeshift memorial was created at the intersection for the younger brother, who was killed after he allegedly led police on a pursuit in a stolen car linked to a crime spree.

The woman Sykap allegedly assaulted was treated and released at a hospital for a nonlife-threatening stab wound to her upper body. Sykap’s brother Mark Sykap, 18, was indicted for second-degree robbery for allegedly robbing the woman of her property after Maruo Sykap assaulted her.

Mark Sykap pleaded not guilty to the charge and is scheduled to appear at trial in August. He remains free after posting a $50,000 bail bond.

At Maruo Sykap’s arraignment Thursday, his attorney, Walter Rodby, entered a not-guilty plea to all of the charges on Sykap’s behalf.

Judge Christine Kuriyama scheduled Sykap’s trial to be held in September. She confirmed he will be held without bail in the April 22 robbery case and $100,000 bail on a charge of the April 24 assault case.

Sykap — who was wanted on grand jury warrants for the robbery and assault charges — turned himself in June 15 at the Sheriff’s Division’s Booking and Receiving Station in Kakaako.

First-degree robbery is considered a Class A felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison, if convicted.

Second-degree assault is considered a Class C felony that is punishable by up to five years in prison.

The death of Iremamber Sykap has led to a division in the community between those who support the officers involved in the shooting and those who believe the killing could have been avoided.

A grand jury declined to indict the officers who shot Sykap.

Prosecutors then filed a criminal complaint, charging one officer with murder and two officers with attempted murder in Sykap’s death.

A preliminary hearing in the officers’ cases was held Tuesday at Honolulu District Court with dozens of protesters on both sides rallying outside the courthouse. The hearing continues next week.

On April 5, police fired multiple gunshots into a stolen car that was allegedly involved in a two-day crime spree. Sykap, who had methamphetamine in his system, was in the driver’s seat at the time.

The criminal complaint charged Geoffrey H.L. Thom, 42, with second-degree murder, saying he fired 10 shots through the window as the car was stationary, hitting the teen eight times. Zackary K. Ah Nee, 26, and Christopher J. Fredeluces, 40, were charged with second-degree attempted murder.

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