Kauai police have opened a homicide investigation in the death of an 88-year-old Oma'o man.
The victim Amby Cruz was found unresponsive at his home in the early morning hours on Wednesday, Jan. 1 when firefighters arrived on scene for what was reported as a medical call. Subsequently, he was transported to Wilcox Hospital where he was pronounced dead.
An autopsy was conducted on Jan. 2. The results are not yet final, but it was determined that the victim suffered a single fatal gunshot wound to the head.
"On behalf of the Kaua'i Police Department, I would like to offer my sincere condolences to the Cruz family for their loss, and I want to assure them and the public, that we will do everything within our power to solve this case to bring justice for the victim," said Kauai Police Chief Darryl Perry.
Initially there were no leads in this case although investigators interviewed friends and family of the victim as well as neighbors. Over the course of seven days, they gathered evidence, facts and statements that resulted in an arrest warrant being issued for Giovani Corpuz, 41, of Oma'o.
Corpuz was taken into custody on Jan. 8 while en route to the Philippines with the assistance of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Honolulu Office and the cooperation of the Taipei government. He was then transferred to the United States Marshals Service, Hawai'i District and is currently awaiting extradition back to the U.S. to face charges.
Prosecuting Attorney Justin F. Kollar thanked the federal and local agencies involved in apprehending the suspect.
"The public is reminded that at this point, Corpuz is only accused of a crime and is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law," said Kollar.
Anyone with information that may be pertinent to the investigation is urged to contact Det. Bernard Purisima at 241-1682.
Anonymous tipsters can call CrimeStoppers at 241-1887.