Family accuses prosecutors of deceit, failure months after federal agent murder trial
“We have decided to no longer suffer in silence,” said Jenell Elderts on Friday.
After not a peep throughout the trial and its aftermath, Kollin Elderts' parents have thrown open the flood gates, accusing prosecutors of lies, deceit, and failing to do their job.
“Our entire family felt abandoned by the prosecutors office,” she said at a small press conference in downtown Honolulu.
She said before and during the trial, she spoke with prosecutors every week, then nearly every day.
As the murder trial of Special Agent Christopher Deedy came to a close, she said prosecutors assured her they'd ask for lesser charges too, but that didn't happen.
“We just want this guy in jail, in prison,” said Elderts.
Honolulu Prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro fired back in a statement saying:
"The statements made by the Elderts family are not true. No promises were ever made regarding charges."
After closing arguments in August, Judge Karen Ahn agreed with Deputy Prosecutor Janice Futa that there was no evidence to support lesser charges -- such as Manslaughter or Reckless Endangerment.
Deedy's Attorney Brook Hart said he agreed, reiterating what he said during the trial, that when Deedy pulled his gun in self-defense the special agent intended to shoot to kill.
“If they had had an opportunity to at least consider manslaughter, we may not be sitting here today, said Attorney Michael Green who is representing the Elderts family in a civil suit.
But that civil suit will come only after any criminal proceedings that could take months, if not years.
Hart said on Friday, he and Deedy’s new lead attorney Tom Otake, have serious concerns about Green making statements before a criminal case and a civil trial have been held.
“Our family's broken,” said Jenell Elderts.
“What helped you get though this?” KITV reporter Lara Yamada asked Elderts’ father Kendall.
“My sons,” he said, with tears welling in his eyes.
Elderts dad barely spoke during the interview.
He said he lost his job in attending the trial every day, and months after the trial began, is still devastated by the fact that his son is gone.
“It is difficult. (Kollin) was my best friend,” said the senior Elderts.
Jenell Elderts said she continued to work so Kendall could attend the trial, despite losing his job.
But, he said, he is excited about starting his new job soon.
Deedy's second trial is scheduled for June 16th.
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