Convicted murderer could get out of prison this week

Published On: Nov 18 2013 05:09:00 PM HST

More than 30 years ago, Dana Rapozo walked into the courthouse for his 1980 murder trial.

Rapozo was just 19 years old when prosecutors say he walked up to a Waimanalo home and shot and killed his friend Gary Borges.

"Dana called Gary to the door and then shot him.  Not once, not twice, but three times," said Deputy Prosecutor Janice Futa.

Click here to watch Cam Tran's report.

Rapozo was found guilty of the 1978 murder and sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole.

"I am totally sorry," said Rapozo.

Now three decades later, the graying 54 year old is back in court apologizing for his actions and fighting for his freedom.

"I know I hurt you and I hurt my family," said Rapozo.

The court agreed to reconsider his original life sentence after Rapozo filed a petition.

"At the time of sentencing, though, the law was different than it was today," said Rapozo's defense attorney Victor Bakke.  "It allowed for the judge to give three types of sentencing: life with possibility of parole; maximum 20 years; or youthful offender, meaning because he was between the ages of 18 and 22 at the time of the offense, he could have gotten four years."

Bakke asked Judge Michael Wilson to resentence Rapozo to 20 years, which would mean he would be set free.  The victim's common-law wife supports the request.

"I can honestly say I have no remorse or ill feelings with Dana," said Doralene Johnson.  "This happened so many, many years ago -- 35 years to be exact.  I feel he should be released, but it is not up to me."

The deputy prosecutor who put Rapozo behind bars wants the initial sentencing to stay citing Rapozo's violent history.

"At the time, Mr. Rapozo committed this murder, he was on probation for two escapes for one burglary and one robbery in the second degree," said Futa.

Both sides will have to wait a little longer to find out Rapozo's fate as Judge Wilson delayed his decision until Thursday.


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