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'No white man is ever going to live here': Racist Maui duo face sentencing for beating man unconscious because of the color of his skin
Image source: YouTube screenshot, composite

'No white man is ever going to live here': Racist Maui duo face sentencing for beating man unconscious because of the color of his skin

Two native Hawaiian men savagely attacked a white man with a shovel in 2014 because they didn't want someone with his skin color moving into their Maui village. The brutal beatings left the victim with cracked ribs, a concussion, and head trauma.

Kaulana Alo-Kaonohi and Levi Aki Jr., both in their early thirties, were each convicted of federal hate crimes in November and face sentencing Thursday. Local lawyers reckon this is the first time the U.S. has prosecuted native Hawaiians for hate crimes, reported the Associated Press.

The Department of Justice indicated in November that both men could be sentenced for up to ten years in jail. Prosecutors have sought nine years for Alo-Kaonohi and six-and-a-half years for Aki.

Alo-Kaonohi previously pleaded no contest to felony assault in state court and was sentenced to probation. Aki pleaded no contest to terroristic threatening and was sentenced in state court to 200 days in jail.

TheBlaze previously reported that Christopher Kunzelman and his family set out to move into a small fishing village in Maui so that his multiple sclerosis-stricken wife, Lori Kunzelman, could be by the seaside along with their three daughters. They purchased a house in the area for $175,000.

"We loved Maui; we loved the people," Lori Kunzelman told the Associated Press.

The family didn't realize that Maui wouldn't love them back.

Lori Kunzelman told the Associated Press that racists descended upon her husband as he attempted to fix up their new home.

"It was obviously a hate crime from the very beginning," she said. "The whole time they’re saying things like, ‘You have the wrong skin color. No 'haole' is ever going to live in our neighborhood.'"

"Haole" is a Hawaiian racial slur for foreigner or white person.

Judy Rohrer, a professor at Eastern Washington University told the Associated Press that the racially-charged term also is used to denote a sense of entitlement, "like you own the place."

After brutalizing Kunzelman, Aki referred to the victim when speaking to police as a "rich Haole guy," a "dumb haole," and a "typical haole thinking he owning everything ... trying to change things up in Kahakuloa," said prosecutors.

The federal jury that found racists Alo-Kaonohi and Aki each guilty of a hate crime heard during the trial in November that various residents in the area had similarly harassed and threatened the Kunzelmans, telling them, "This is a Hawaiian village. The only thing coming from the outside is the electricity," and "You don't even belong in Hawaii."

The Department of Justice noted that on Feb. 13, 2014, Kunzelman was unpacking his belongings with his elderly uncle, and the convicts — who'd never met the victim before — "stormed onto his property and demanded that he pack his things and leave."

The DOJ said they threatened to “tie [him] up and drag [him]” and make him “go missing” if he didn't comply.

When Kunzelman informed the racist duo that he owned the house, Alo-Kaonohi "dragged his index finger along C.K.’s jaw and told him, 'You’ve got the wrong f****** color skin.'"

After the duo underscored their racial animus, Aki handed a roofing shovel to Alo-Kaonohi, who reportedly bashed Kunzelman over the head, leaving him with a bloody wound.

The racists later returned as Kunzelman was packing up his possessions and attacked him a second time. They thumped him once more with the shovel, headbutted him, and struck him in the face.

Kunzelman was rendered unconscious, regaining it only to find the racist duo taking turns kicking him in the ribs.

The DOJ noted that one of the convicts said during the second attack, "no white man is ever going to live here."

Cameras on Kunzelman's car captured critical evidence that corroborated his account of the hate crime:

Two Hawaii men found guilty of hate crime in 2014 attackyoutu.be

Lori Kunzelman indicated her family does not live in the Kahakuloa home, but still owns it. They have reportedly been unable to sell it on account of "the animosity that's there."

Hawaii's racial makeup is 38% Asian, 26% white, 2% black, 20% native Hawaiian, and a medley of other ethnicities.

When reporting on the duo's sentencing this week, the Associated Press intimated that the hate crime was, in part, a fight against cultural erasure and that the victim was ignorant, claiming the case "highlights the struggles between Native Hawaiians who are adamant about not having their culture erased and people who move to Hawaii without knowing or considering its history and racial dynamics."

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Joseph MacKinnon

Joseph MacKinnon

Joseph MacKinnon is a staff writer for Blaze News. He lives in a small town with his wife and son, moonlighting as an author of science fiction.
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