The attorney representing a Kailua tattoo shop owner in a deadly stabbing case says his client is a former Marine trained to respond to violence, not initiate it.
Honolulu police say prosecutors declined to pursue charges against Aloha Tattoo Company owner Timothy Goodrich.
Police say Goodrich stabbed Dayson Kaae. The 24-year-old was taken to Castle Medical Center in critical condition and later died.
Police say officers were initially called for a robbery.
Attorney Myles Breiner tells us Goodrich was trained to protect himself, and on the night his shop was about to be robbed, Goodrich had a three-inch standard legal knife on him.
Breiner says Goodrich used it when he was being attacked, stabbing Kaae two to three times after Kaae hit Goodrich in the face repeatedly.
"Unfortunately, some main arteries were hit, but it wasn't as though Mr. Goodrich pinned him down and stabbed him over and over," Breiner said. "There was a struggle and Mr. Goodrich sustained injuries to his face, chest, and neck."
"Some would say that even though it was self defense, excessive force may have been used because the person died. What is your response?" KHON2 asked.
"There was an autopsy done by the medical examiner, and the detective interviewed over a dozen people, and they concluded it was self defense. We know from the witnesses that the person hitting him had something in his hand, but we don't know what it was," Breiner said. "They were prepared to do violence, so to say excessive force, it's unfortunate. I know Mr. Goodrich feels terrible that someone has died as a result of trying to rob him, his clients, and his employees."
Breiner tells us there were a total of four people, including Kaae, and that police are currently looking for three individuals who left the scene.
Breiner also says there is no surveillance footage of the incident.
Police have yet to update us on the investigation. Officers previously told us one man had accompanied Kaae into the shop.
Meanwhile, we spoke to Kaae's mother, Lorraine Kaae, who says she's angry about the prosecutor's decision not to seek charges.
"We're making the funeral arrangements right now," she said while in tears. "I'm sitting here (thinking) okay, what's going to happen next? I know Dayson was rascal and everything, but his life should not have been taken. ... I don't know. The only thing I know is that I miss my son."
"I don't think it would be appropriate for him to extend his condolences, but I can, on his behalf, extend that to the family he wishes it never happened," Breiner said.