Minimum sentence set for Peter Kema Sr.

Local News

Eighteen years! That’s the minimum sentence handed down to Peter Kema Sr. by the parole board, for the death of his son “Peter Boy.”
Prosecutors say they are pleased with the decision, but are still hoping that Kema is held in prison for the maximum 20-year term.

Kema could have been eligible for parole in less than seven years under the plea agreement. But the Hawaii Paroling Authority has the last say, and prosecutors say the notoriety of the case had to be considered in the decision.

Kema was sentenced to a 20-year maximum prison term after pleading guilty to manslaughter and hindering prosecution. As part of a plea deal with prosecutors, he would have been eligible for parole after serving six years and eight months. 

Prosecutors were counting on the Hawaii Paroling Authority to raise the minimum sentence much higher, which it did, to 18 years. 

“We’re quite pleased with that number and we believe that it won’t be 18 it will probably be 20 before he gets out of prison so 18 is pretty good number,” said Hawaii County Prosecutor Mitch Roth.

“Peter Boy” disappeared in 1997 when he was six years old. Records show that he was tortured and abused by his father. Prosecutors say the child died of septic shock from his wounds. Roth said that in making the decision, the parole board had to consider that Kema committed such a horrific crime.

“And how it impacted the community, and how little regard he showed for not only his family, but for everybody else in the system, and our society and community in general. You have a child that went through what he went through. I think a lack of remorse as well played a factor into this,” he said.

At his sentencing last year, Kema did not make a statement, and offered no apologies to the rest of the family.

“I thought he would at least turn to us and look at us and apologize. Say something. If you’re human, say something,” said Jimmy Acol, Peter Boy’s grandfather.

Counting time served, Kema will be eligible for parole in April 2034. He will be 63 years old.

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