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PROSECUTING ATTORNEY - ABOUT US

OUR HISTORY

In 1903 Hawai’i’s second legislature passed Act 31 which provided for the organization of County governments.  On November 3, 1903 the first election was held.  Elected County Attorneys were John U. Smith for the County of East Hawai’i and Guy F. Maydell for the County of West Hawai’i.  This election was invalidated when the Supreme Court repealed Act 31.  The election of 1903 was claimed non-existent.

In 1905 Act 39 of the 3rd Legislature provided for the creation of counties in the Territory of Hawai’i.  In the election of June 20, 1905 Charles Williams was elected County Attorney for Hawai’i County.

The County Attorney’s Office handled both criminal and civil matters until a change in the Hawai’i County Charter abolished the County Attorney position and created two legal offices:  the Office of the Prosecuting Attorney to handle criminal matters and the Office of the Corporation Counsel to handle civil cases.  The Office of the Prosecuting Attorney was established in 1968. 

 

Charles Williams (County Attorney 1905-1910) born Honoka’a, Hawai’i. Elected County Attorney in 1901.

 

Photo of William H. BeersWilliam H. Beers (County Attorney 1910-1938) born Honolulu, Hawai‘i. Kamehameha School Class of 1895, Honoka’a Public School teacher (1896-1897); Hilo Boarding School teacher (1898-1902), South Hilo District Court Clerk and interpreter (1902-1906), University of Michigan Law Department Class of 1908, Interpreter for the Territory of Hawai’i House of Representatives (1909 session), appointed County Attorney in 1909 and elected County Attorney in 1910.

 

Photo of Martin PenceMartin Pence (County Attorney 1938–1945) born Sterling, Kansas. University of California School of Jurisprudence at Berkeley Class of 1928, private law practice (1928-1938), elected County Attorney in 1938, Third Territorial Circuit Judge (1945-1950), Pence and Ushijima (1950-1961), chief Judge United States district Court (1961-2000).

 

 

Photo of Thomas T. OkinoThomas T. Okino (County Attorney 1946-1948) born Hilo, Hawai’i. Hilo High School Class of 1925, Oberlin College Class of 1929, Harvard Law School Class of 1932, District Magistrate – Puna (1934-1939), elected County attorney in 1946, private law practice in Hilo (1949-1963), appointed circuit court Judge in 1963, Hawai’i State Senator (1950-1954 & 1956-1959).

 

 

Photo of Albert M. FelixAlbert M. Felix (County Attorney 1948-1953) born Honolulu, Hawai’i. St. Louis High School class of 1932, University of Hawai’i Class of 1945, Loyola School of Law Class of 1947, Police Officer (1934-1943), appointed Deputy County Attorney 1947, elected County Attorney 1948, First Circuit Court Judge (1953-`959), Third Circuit Court 1st Judge (1959)

 

 

Photo of Nelson K. DoiNelson K. Doi (County Attorney 1953-1954) born Pahoa, Hawai’i. Honokaa High School, University of Hawai’i, University of Minnesota Law School, Deputy County Attorney (1949-1953), appointed County Attorney (1953), elected to State Senate (1954), appointed Judge Third Circuit (1968), elected Lieutenant Governor (1974-1978).

 

 

Photo of Yoshito TanakaYoshito Tanaka (County Attorney 1954-1968) (Prosecuting Attorney 1968-1972) Honolulu, Hawai’i. Hilo High School, University of Hawai’i, University of Wisconsin Law School, elected County Attorney (1954), elected County Prosecuting Attorney (1968).

 

 

 

Photo of Paul M. De SilvaPaul M. De Silva (Prosecuting Attorney 1972-1978) Hilo, Hawai’i. Hilo High School Class of 1952, University of Hawai’i Class of 1957, University of Hawai’i – Fifth Year Certificate in Education (1958), school teacher in states of Hawai’i, Idaho, and Washington (1959-1979), Gonzaga University Law School Class of 1965, appointed Deputy County Attorney (1967), elected Prosecuting Attorney (1972), appointed Circuit Court Judge (1978-1988).

 

 

Photo of Jon R. OnoJon R. Ono (Prosecuting Attorney 1978-1992) Honolulu, Hawai‘i. Kalani High School, University of Hawai‘i Class of 1968, University of San Francisco School of Law Class of 1971, appointed Deputy Prosecuting Attorney (1974), appointed First Deputy Prosecuting Attorney (1974), elected Prosecuting Attorney (1978).

 

 

 

Photo of Jay T. KimuraJay T. Kimura (Prosecuting Attorney 1992-2011) born Lihue, Kauai. University of Hawai‘i Class of 1974, California Western Law School Class of 1979, appointed Deputy Prosecuting Attorney (1979), appointed First Deputy (1982), elected County Prosecuting Attorney (1992).

 

 

 

Charlene Y. Iboshi (Prosecuting Attorney 2011-2012) born Hilo, Hawai‘i. Graduated from Hilo High School, University of Hawai‘i, University of Puget Sound Law School, worked as deputy prosecuting attorney in King County Washington, then appointed as Hawai‘i County Deputy Prosecuting Attorney (1980), appointed First Deputy (1992), and appointed Prosecuting Attorney (2011). Licensed to practice in Washington and Hawai‘i.