Man arrested, released as police investigate Kahului woman’s death

The Maui Police Department made an arrest after a woman was found dead in her Kahului home.

On Friday, Jan. 2 at approximately 7:40 a.m., Wailuku patrol officers responded to a call from a man who reported smoke coming from a residence on Molokai Akau Street.

Officials said the man reported seeing smoke coming from a residence belonging to his girlfriend’s aunt. Upon entering, he observed items near the stove smoldering and his girlfriend’s aunt lying in her bedroom.

When the police arrived, they put out the smoldering fire with extinguishers and, upon checking the bedroom, confirmed that a woman was dead with suspicious injuries.

She was identified as Gail Otsuka, 61, of Kahului. Her exact cause of death is pending an autopsy.

That same night, at about 8:28 p.m., police arrested Keoni Vinuya Tomas, 25, of Kahului, in connection with Otsuka’s death. He was released pending further investigation.

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