Costa charged in double murder 07-19-06

HAWAII POLICE DEPARTMENT
CRIMINAL INVESTIGATIONS SECTION, AREA II
ACTING LIEUTENANT LLEWELLYN FUKUI
PHONE: 326-4646, EXT. 304
JULY 19, 2006
REPORT NO. C06021898

MEDIA RELEASE

Hawaii Police detectives have charged a Puna man in connection with a deliberate car crash that killed two Hilo women early Sunday (July 16, 2006).

Vernon E. Costa, 41, was charged at 3:40 p.m. Wednesday with first-degree murder, two counts of second-degree murder, attempted second-degree murder, promoting a dangerous drug, drug paraphernalia, fraudulent use of a license plate, driving while his license was revoked, safety sticker violation, weight tax violation, no no-fault insurance, and failure to give information and aid.

He is being held in police custody in lieu of $500,000 bail pending his initial court appearance set for Thursday, July 20, in Hilo District Court.

Costa was arrested Monday afternoon (Julu 17, 2006) in the Eden Roc subdivision in Puna.

He is accused of deliberately running a car off the road shortly after midnight Sunday near the 16-mile marker of Highway 190.

Pua Lei Santa Isabel, 26, and Casey Ann Swain, 35, died in the crash.

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