Attempted-murder suspect arrested on Kauai

Justin Klein

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$1 million. That’s the bail amount for a Kauai man arrested for attempted murder.

Justin Klein had been on the run since December when he was seen pushing a Japanese tourist off a cliff.

But Klein’s sister told KHON2 there’s more to the story.

It’s been a multi-agency search for Klein for four months and now the wanted fugitive is behind bars.

But this may have not been a random act.

Klein, 32, has been the face of Kauai’s wanted fugitive list. Ever since December, when he was hiking along the Kalalau Valley on the island’s North Shore.

The witnesses say he grabbed a 31-year-old Japanese visitor, and throw her off the cliff. She fell about 15 feet and suffered critical injures, but survived. Klein then went on the run.

“Mainly relied in DLNR enforcement unit conservation officers helped us, knowledgeable the terrain and the area because Mr. Klein frequented the valley and that area,” said Kauai police assistant chief Roy Asher.

But Klein’s sister says there’s more to the story. The woman involved was no random stranger.

“He had actually been having a relationship with her and I’m not sure everyone is clear on that,” said Klein’s sister Jody Pearson.

A four-day sweep of the area turned up no sign Klein but police persisted and turned to the public for help. After four months, and numerous tips none of the leads lead police to finding him until Saturday.

“We needed the public’s help in bringing him out into the open and that’s what occurred,” said Asher.

Around 5:30 a tipster alerted Kauai Police that Klein was at Lydgate Beach Park in Kapaa.

“He approached beach goers and identified himself and if they could give him a ride to the police station to turn himself in,” said Asher.

Klein’s sister says she had not heard from her brother since October. But out of the blue on Saturday, he called her to say he was coming forward to police.

“He did not admit it but he did not deny either I think there is a different set of circumstances and I think drugs are involved,” noted Pearson.

Klein was taken into custody by police. In December a Grand Jury indicted Klein for second degree murder his bail set at $1 million.

“Whatever happened he was not trying to intentionally harm her. I think that is the case. Maybe an accident happened and we can all get to the bottom of it,” said Pearson.

The visitor involved in this incident spent a week in the hospital and has since returned to her family in Japan.

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