Suspect in triple-murder appears in court; police confirm wife was a victim

John Hoffman


As the suspect in a triple-murder appeared in a Hawaii Island courtroom Monday, we’re learning more about the case and how the victims died.

John Ali Hoffman was charged with first-degree murder, three counts of second-degree murder, place to keep and use of a firearm in the commission of a separate felony. His bail was maintained at $2,750,000.

In court, Hoffman requested that he represent himself. “I’m a sovereign person. I would like to represent myself,” he told the judge. “Also any information that I provide would be a national security breach.”

Judge Harry Freitas held off on a decision until further discussion can take place.

“I’ve got to tell you, the more you speak about those things, the more I think I gotta keep (your public defender) Mr. (Brian) DeLima in, so you might want to talk to him,” he said. “The more you go down this path, the more I think I gotta keep Mr. DeLima in to make sure you’re protected.”

Hoffman is scheduled to return to court in June after a psych evaluation.

Meanwhile, Hawaii Island police revealed the woman killed was his wife, Aracely Hoffman, 40, formerly known as Aracely Monroy Urruela. Police said documents located at the residence reveal the two were married in March 2008.

Court documents revealed that in the early morning hours of Friday, May 6, police received a call from Hoffman, who told police that three to four intruders entered his home and shot his wife.

Responding officers encountered a vehicle leaving the residence without its lights on, and stopped it one street away, they said. Hoffman was identified as the driver.

According to documents, police observed a handgun on the passenger seat, and “blood was observed on Hoffman and also dripping from the trunk of the vehicle,” where the body of Aracely Hoffman was found with a gunshot to the head.

Officers then checked the home, where they found the bodies of two children — a girl in the bedroom and a boy in the living room — both with gunshot wounds to the head.

They have been identified as 7-year-old Clara Hoffman and 5-year-old John Hoffman, the couple’s children.

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