Suspects connected to Whitmore Village murder, arson case indicted

Anjelita Rasa

Four suspects connected to a murder at Whitmore Village have been indicted by an Oahu grand jury.

Anjelita Rasa, 26, who was arrested and charged with second-degree murder, use of a firearm in the commission of a felony, being a felon in possession of a firearm, place to keep a firearm, and theft, appeared in court Wednesday.

Three others appeared in court Monday morning.

Shaun Branco-Taguchi, 29, is charged with second-degree murder, use of a firearm in the commission of a felony, ownership or possession of a firearm or ammunition by a person indicted for certain crimes, place to keep, and second-degree arson.

Shane Rodrigues, 30, is charged with being an accomplice to murder, ownership or possession of a firearm or ammunition by a person indicted for certain crimes, place to keep, ownership or possession of prohibited ammunition, and second-degree arson.

Jessica Samson, 26, who was initially arrested for hindering prosecution, is charged with second-degree arson.

Bail for Rasa and Branco-Taguchi was confirmed at $1 million. Rodrigues’ bail was confirmed at $500,00, and Samson’s at $25,000.

Court documents reveal details of the police investigation.

On June 23, police found a vehicle burning at Makua Cave in West Oahu. Officers learned that the vehicle was registered to William Aki.

When they went to his Wahiawa home, they found the 65-year-old dead inside, lying in a pool of blood. An autopsy revealed he died from gunshot wounds in the head and torso.

Police said a disposable cup was recovered from the scene and a DNA test matched Rasa, who a family member identified as Aki’s ex-girlfriend.

According to court documents, detectives were told by multiple sources that Rasa was using Aki for a place to live and money to buy drugs, and that he kicked her out prior to the incident.

When Rasa was questioned, police said she confessed to her involvement in Aki’s murder.

Police said that further investigation revealed her boyfriend, Branco-Taguchi, shot Aki and torched his car. He was out on bond and pending trial in a robbery case.

Police said Rodrigues, who is Branco-Taguchi’s cousin, provided the firearm used to shoot Aki. He was also out on bond and pending trial for theft and drug cases.

Police said Samson helped set Aki’s car on fire after repeatedly denying that she was involved or had any knowledge of the incident.

Shane Rodrigues and Shaun Branco-Taguchi
Shane Rodrigues and Shaun Branco-Taguchi

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s