Keith Kaneshiro and Peter Carlisle both served the Department of the Prosecuting Attorney under the first elected prosecutor.
Carlisle — Kaneshiro’s former colleague as well as interim Mayor of Honolulu — is disturbed by the controversy and shared his thoughts.
Asked for his response to the controversy involving his former colleague and the broadening case against deputy prosecutor Katherine Kealoha, her spouse and family members, Peter Carlisle pulled few punches.
“This has been a catastrophic period for law enforcement. it’s absolutely disgraceful.”
Carlisle says he believes that in calling for Kaneshiro’s suspension, State Attorney General Clare Connors did “exactly and precisely” what she needed to do.
Honolulu’s legal community has not seen a public corruption scandal like the Kealoha case in many years, if ever.
Carlisle says, “it is absolutely unequivocally unacceptable to have this kind of behavior of corruption here in the City and County of Honolulu.”
Under Honolulu’s first elected prosecutor, Charles Marsland, in the 1980s, Carlisle worked as a deputy prosecutor –while Keith Kaneshiro was an attorney assigned to the Organized Crime Strike Force.
Today, Attorney William McCorriston cautioned against rushing to judgement against Kaneshiro. Asked about the presumption of innocence, Carlisle said:
“We’re not talking about a criminal prosecution, we’re talking about corruption in government. And there is plenty of evidence to suggest that that is exactly what is going on and he is responsible for that behavior.”
While he wants Kaneshiro out, Carlisle is concerned that without effective leadership, criminals might not be held accountable.