Body identified as missing Honaunau man 11-15-03

HAWAII COUNTY POLICE DEPARTMENT
WEST HAWAII CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION SECTION
DETECTIVE WAYNE K. YOUNG
PHONE: 326-4275
NOVEMBER 15, 2003

MEDIA RELEASE UPDATE

The body of a man whose remains were discovered Friday (November 14, 2003) has been identified as that of a missing South Kona man.

The missing man was identified through dental records as Jonah Mettler, 32, of Honaunau, who had been reported missing on August 26, 2003. He had last been seen leaving for work at the Natural Energy Lab in Keahole, North Kona.

The results of an autopsy conducted Saturday indicated that Mettler had died of foul play. Several spent bullets were recovered from the body, but determining an exact cause of death is pending further examination.

Police have reclassified the case from a coroner’s inquest to a murder investigation. Hawaii Criminal Investigation Section detectives are continuing the investigation.

Mettler’s badly decomposed remains were located amid kiawe trees about 200 to 300 feet from the shoreline south of Lapakahi State Historical Park in North Kohala. Two fishermen on a crabbing expedition discovered the body and called police.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call Detective Wayne Young of the West Hawaii CIS at 326-4275 or the police non-emergency number at 935-3311.

Those who wish to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo or 329-8181 in Kona. The numbers are answered 24 hours a day. Callers will be given a coded number and their identity will remain anonymous. Callers may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000 if their call leads to an arrest, indictment or the recovery of property. Crime Stoppers neither subscribes to “Caller ID,” nor does it record phone calls.

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