Skip to Main Nav Skip to Main Content Skip to Footer Content

Oral Argument Before the Hawaii Supreme Court–SCWC-20-0000153

Courts in the Community

No. SCWC-20-0000153, Wednesday, December 1, 2021, 9:30 a.m.

STATE OF HAWAII, Petitioner/Plaintiff-Appellant, vs. JOHN KEONI JARDINE, also known as JOHN KEONI JARDINE III and JOHN JARDINE III, Respondent/Defendant-Appellee.

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

The oral argument was remotely and livestreamed for public viewing via the Judiciary’s YouTube channel at

Attorney for Petitioner State of Hawaii: Stephen K. Tsushima, Deputy Prosecuting Attorney

Attorney for Respondent John Keoni Jardine: Emmanuel G. Guerrero

NOTE: Order accepting Application for Writ of Certiorari, filed 09/28/21.

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

 Listen to the entire audio recording in mp3 format  ]

Brief Description:

In August 2019, Petitioner/Plaintiff-Appellant State of Hawaiʻi (the State) charged Respondent/Defendant-Appellee John Keoni Jardine (Jardine) with assault in the second degree for allegedly using a baseball bat to strike a complaining witness in the head. The charging document indicated that:

On or about August 25, 2019, in the City and County of Honolulu, State of Hawaii, JOHN KEONI JARDINE, also known as John Keoni Jardine III and John Jardine III, did intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly cause substantial bodily injury to [the complaining witness], and/or did intentionally or knowingly cause bodily injury to [the complaining witness] with a dangerous instrument, thereby committing the offense of Assault in the Second Degree, in violation of Section 707-711(1)(a) and/or Section 707-711(1)(d) of the Hawaii Revised Statutes.

Jardine moved to dismiss the charging document on the basis that it did not “provide notice as to one of the elements of the offense, to wit, the definitions of a ‘substantial bodily injury’ or ‘dangerous instrument’, and therefore the charge is a defective charge.” The Circuit Court of the First Circuit (circuit court) granted Jardine’s motion. The Intermediate Court of Appeals (ICA) affirmed the dismissal.

On application for writ of certiorari, the State argues that (1) the ICA’s decision is erroneous because it is inconsistent with State v. Manoa, 127 Hawaii 3, 274 P.3d 1247 (App. 2012); and (2) the charging document was not defective because the State did not need to define “substantial bodily injury” or “dangerous instrument.”