HAWAII ISLAND – Hawaii County Mayor Billy Kenoi turned himself in to police on Tueday, following a grand jury indictment for his alleged misuse of a government issued purchase card between 2011 and 2015.
News media reports say the mayor was arrested at the Pahoa police station and later released. He will appear in Hilo Circuit Court on Wednesday.
Todd Eddins, the mayor’s attorney, told Hawaii News Now in a statement Tuesday afternoon that Kenoi is “heartened by the outpouring of support he has received from the people of Hawaii Island. He will continue to work tirelessly for his hometown.”
Hawaii News Now also shared this interview with Hawaii Attorney General Doug Chin, conducted the day of the indictment (March 23, 2016).
- The charges, according to the State Attorney General, are:
- Counts 1 and 2: Theft in the Second Degree, Class C felonies each punishable by up to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
- Counts 3 and 4: Theft in the Third Degree, misdemeanors each punishable by up to one year in jail and a $2,000 fine.
- Counts 5, 6 and 7: Tampering with a Government Record, misdemeanors each punishable by up to one year in jail and a $2,000 fine.
- Count 8: False Swearing, a petty misdemeanor punishable by up to 30 days in jail and a $1,000 fine.
An indictment is a finding of probable cause and is not a criminal conviction, the AG office said. Mayor Kenoi is presumed innocent unless and until he is found guilty of the charges beyond a reasonable doubt.