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Oral Argument before the Hawaii Supreme Court — No. SCWC-20-0000485

No. SCWC-20-0000485, Thursday, September 1, 2022, 10 a.m.

In the Interest of DM.

The above-captioned case has been set for oral argument on the merits at:

Supreme Court Courtroom
Aliʻiolani Hale, 2nd Floor
417 South King Street
Honolulu, HI 96813

The oral argument will also be livestreamed for public viewing via the Judiciary’s YouTube channel at

Attorney for Petitioner DM: 

Phyllis J. Hironaka, Deputy Public Defender

Attorney for Respondent State of Hawaiʻi: 

Brian R. Vincent, Deputy Prosecuting Attorney

NOTE: Order accepting Application for Writ of Certiorari, filed 07/13/22.

COURT: Recktenwald, C.J., Nakayama, McKenna, Wilson, and Eddins, JJ.

Listen to the entire audio recording in mp3 format ]

Brief Description:

In June 2019, Petitioner/Minor-Appellant DM was involved in an altercation with the complaining witness (CW) at Hau Bush, a beach park in Ewa Beach. DM retrieved a knife and CW was stabbed as CW tackled DM to the ground.

Respondent/Plaintiff-Appellee the State of Hawaiʻi (the State) charged DM with Attempted Assault in the First Degree. After a three-day bench trial, the Family Court of the First Circuit (family court) adjudicated DM as a law violator for committing the offense of Attempted Assault in the First Degree. The family court issued its findings of fact and conclusions of law on July 24, 2020. A majority of the Intermediate Court of Appeals (ICA) determined that the family court’s (1) findings of fact were not clearly erroneous; and (2) conclusions of law were not incorrect.

On application for writ of certiorari, DM argues that the ICA majority erroneously affirmed DM’s adjudication of Attempted Assault in the First Degree because (1) the family court’s findings of fact do not accurately reflect the trial testimony; and (2) the family court insufficiently analyzed DM’s self-defense justification, resulting in incorrect conclusions of law.