Letters — A Formal Apology From The Student Who Lied About An Attack

(Editor’s note: The following letter comes from the 19-year-old girl who lied when telling the police and the media she was attacked at knifepoint in a UH Hilo bathroom last week. ) Dear Big Island Chronicle, I am ultimately sorry for lying to you and hope that we can make amends.  I know that you confided in me and told me what you have been through, gave me advice about what I can do to help myself in certain situations, and told me that you’d be there for me. I am sorry that I abused your trust.  I know that this situation has affected many people and I gave a bad reputation to Hilo.  I will take up your suggestion about going to the women’s center to volunteer and learn about theseserious life situations.  I understand that your reputation is on the line and I am SO SORRY, I am wanting to know what else I can do to help you and your career.  I understand the consequences that can happen to me because of this whole lie I had made up.  I am learning form this very hard lesson and hope to strive and walk in the light again. (Name omitted)

37 replies
  1. Kathryn
    Kathryn says:

    That’s fine. She’s made a good first step in her personal recovery. Probation and Community Service is what I would opt for were I the Judge. Make sure she sees the real thing. Her life isn’t over.

  2. Ken
    Ken says:

    I am sorry, but this just does not cut it.

    This woman cried “rape.”

    In some news/blogs around this island, even a “suspect” was “named.”

    A type of car being driven was mentioned, and in one news report, claimed a matching vehicle was stopped and its driver questioned.

    One name: Brian Banks.

    No, this is beyond apologies.

    And whatever possible reason this woman initially did what she did should have required mandatory mental health lock up.

    What would, had this exact attack actually have happened, but what would have been the punishment of that offender?

    She deserves at a minimum that. Plus a whole hell of a lot more to society.

    Especially those in society who have had to live thru a terrible attack, similar to, or worse than what this woman lied about happening.

  3. Kathryn
    Kathryn says:

    You’re right. You’re right. She’s also very young. Her brain isn’t even fully developed to fully comprehend the ramifications of her actions. You’re right, and fortunately, no one was lynched. Or even arrested. I’m just trying to make the best of a bad situation here and get things back on track. I agree, it was a VERY big deal. A lot of harm was done. Let’s recover from it and move on.

  4. NeighborWatch
    NeighborWatch says:

    Damn Ken, ever heard of forgiveness? Venomous.
    She apologized and is will to work to make amends.
    Lock her up in a mental ward? Cromagnon much?
    She’s 19? Make a bad situation worse, locker her up and screw up her whole life. Make her a dependent of the state?
    I think she’ll gained some maturation through this experience. But your reaction is to overreact. JMHO
    You were an angel at 19?

  5. Ken
    Ken says:


    A suspect was named.

    What if, that “suspect” she speculated about was a relative of yours?

    What if, just what if, she was a really good liar?

    What if she testified under oath that the “named suspect” committed this attack?

    Would there be this “forgiveness” and willingness to NOT make a person a “dependent of the State” if an actual attack had happened and the real suspect arrested?

    In my opinion, this woman’s lie make the crime of rape “cheap.”

    It allows the fodder of making rape the “victims” fault.

    It fortifies the lunacy of some religions requirements of four male witnesses for proof.

    As for doing what she did at 19, I would have to say education and common sense failed her.

    Was I an angel at 19? By no means.

    But I would not make false reports of assaults that did not happen, nor would I as a male, resort to assaulting women.

    And yes, the only recourse here is a comprehensive mental health understanding as there is no sane reason for her doing what she did.

  6. R.J.
    R.J. says:

    Quoting Ken; “What would, had this exact attack actually have happened, but what would have been the punishment of that offender? She deserves at a minimum that. Plus a whole hell of a lot more to society.”

    So you equate someone attacking someone else with a knife as being equal to someone telling a lie? You equate physical violence with a non-violent lie? Sorry, but those two are not equal transgressions.

    The young woman did wrong. She cost the police time, and the taxpayers money. She ruined her trustworthiness until she can prove herself in the future to be trustworthy. She has a lot of work cut out for herself. But, her “crime” of telling a whopper of a troublesome lie is not the same as a violent knife attack.

    Someone who attacks with a weapon deserves a long stent in prison. Someone with horrible judgement deserves to be held accountable by making up to society what she has cost them. Two different things.

    (Her saving grace is that she came forward with the truth before her lie escalated into the arrest of an innocent person. Had that happened, it would have been a totally different thing about how she should be punished.)

  7. hugh clark
    hugh clark says:

    Over-reaction? Nope.

    This young woman has made cop work so much harder and will impact REAL victims for a long time. She deserves much more than a slap on her wrists.

  8. Ken
    Ken says:

    R.J. said:

    “So you equate someone attacking someone else with a knife as being equal to someone telling a lie? You equate physical violence with a non-violent lie? Sorry, but those two are not equal transgressions.”

    Would you feel the exact same way if you were the “named suspect?”

    I think outside of murder, rape is the absolute most heinous crimes one human can commit against another.

    Telling a lie about it fits somewhere in-between murder and actual rape.

    So then, if I pull out my gun, aim it, pull the trigger and miss, can we just call it even then?

  9. Kathryn
    Kathryn says:

    Not so, Hugh Clark, at least in my opinion. It took good police work and a high degree of professionalism to sort this out and extract the truth from the young woman. The police will, hopefully, use this same type of police professionalism to sort out the crimes to come. Her crime will not dictate the future. And, I didn’t say she should get a “slap on the wrist” for what she did. If she pleads guilty, as I believe she will, then I still think the punishment should reflect the crime, which was lying.

  10. Kathryn
    Kathryn says:

    Ken said: “Telling a lie about it (rape) fits somewhere in-between murder and actual rape.”

    Please, Ken! Get a grip! Think about what you just said!

  11. Amelia
    Amelia says:

    The 19yr old did not just lie. She perpetuated her story and attempted to make it a real truth when she repeatedly gave her testimony to her friends, her parents, Hawaii County Police, UHH officials, and to print/internet/TV reporters.

    She created a story that was based upon a plan of action she put in place to achieve a secret goal. She was clever enough to invent a scenario that she hoped would reap her attention and sympathy, but not smart enough to realize that her story was flawed, that the truth would be uncovered so soon.

    Her actions were premeditated. She had a plan.

    Her apology to Tiffany Edwards Hunt and Big Island Chronicle seems half-hearted and perfunctory. I hope that she would perform more than a nominal amount of community service, no matter what legal action is taken.

    Social media was initially utilized to get the information out to the community about “so-and-so’s” daughter/niece, and how UHH was failing to provide ample security for the students, or failing to inform the public about what happened. It was a crazy round of 21st-century-style ‘telephone.’ I can only imagine what the repercussions could have been had she made implications towards someone in particular, dropped a name, or worse, kept on lying.

    Fortunately, there are a few legitimate journalists in our small community. Thank you, Tiffany Edwards Hunt, for informing us of the entirety of this story.

  12. Ken
    Ken says:

    I have a very firm grip.

    I think you should pay much more attention to what SHE said.

    And stop sympathizing with her as one would towards a victim of such a crime and start looking at her as the criminal she is.

    And yes, telling a lie about being raped and especially going so far as to name a suspect, fits in between that of murder and rape.

  13. Kathryn
    Kathryn says:

    I do not recall that she ever “named” a suspect. She described a vehicle. A vehicle of that description was later stopped and questioned, and let go. No ‘suspect’ was arrested. Let the punishment fit the crime. She did not rape anyone, so the punishment for rape would not apply. She did not knife anyone, so the punishment for assault would not apply. She lied. She made a false police report. Let the punishment fit the crime. Yes, get a grip and calm down.

  14. R.J.
    R.J. says:

    Ken, if she did as you say, go “so far as to name a suspect”, then we are in agreement that her punishment needs to be severe and of a higher degree than what is appropriate for a lie. (My earlier statement, “Her saving grace is that she came forward with the truth before her lie escalated into the arrest of an innocent person. Had that happened, it would have been a totally different thing about how she should be punished”.)

    But I do not recall her naming a suspect, only giving a generic description.

    Meanwhile, your statement “telling a lie about being raped and especially going so far as to name a suspect, fits in between that of murder and rape”. A lie about a perpetrator is worse than committing rape? You need a reality check. Talk to your mother or sister, and ask a few more females about that. Ask a FATHER about that, ask him if it were his daughter or wife: which is worse, rape or a false accusation.

    Of course, this is a side topic, since I do not think she named a name.

  15. Ken
    Ken says:

    @RJ and Kathryn:

    She did name a suspect.

    It was reported on another blog site as coming from a relative that she claimed “….When the police interviewed her, she thought her attacker looked like “name removed” that guy that was just busted. Maybe he has a brother?……”

    Now to R.J. – ask what YOUR mother, father, sister, brother would do if you were falsely accused of rape.

    Ask the family of Brian Banks how that worked for them.

    Rape is a god awful terrible crime. In my opinion, PROVEN perpetrators of rape should be just put to death. But, as you say, that’s another topic.

    But to name a name, accusing that individual of a crime that was never committed, deserves really harsh punishment.

    Escaping that reality makes you part of the problem and much less any part of a solution.

    She needs mental health care and incarceration.


  16. greg
    greg says:

    Ken’s list of penalties (in order of severity):

    Driving without insurance- death
    DUI- double death
    Rape- death tree times
    Lying- four deaths
    Murder- death five times
    All of the above- fifteen deaths

  17. Ken
    Ken says:


    There you go – making false accusations!

    I am quite sure you would look at this “story” with some real seriousness if you were the one falsely accused of committing this act that never happened.

    But then again, it could be that the actual “named suspect” is one more Puna punk thug so – what the heck, he deserves to be accused of a crime that never happened right?

    Now, I do admit, I am also for very stiff penalties for DUI, especially those who drink, drive and kill, as well as anyone who would actually commit the act of rape but that is yet another story that becomes another topic.

  18. Kathryn
    Kathryn says:

    Ken, YOU are the only person I have heard to ‘name a suspect.’ And, since we all now know the story to be false, I think it is highly irresponsible of you to do so.

    As to Greg’s comments, are you familiar with satire perhaps?

  19. Ken
    Ken says:


    Actually what is irresponsible is a person like you making posts about this story and NOT knowing all the facts.

    One does not get to learn nor understand “facts” only by what they hear.

    You should investigate a bit more.

    Then maybe you could offer something to a “fact” based conversation.

    As for Greg’s use of satire, I suggest you also learn exactly what satire is!

  20. greg
    greg says:

    There once was a poster named Ken
    devoid of humor and friends
    one day he toked
    and thought up a joke
    his humorless days at an end

    Bad poetry- Death

  21. Kathryn
    Kathryn says:

    Sorry, I can’t comment. I’ve been bad. If only I could be more responsible and learn the facts before I speak. Studying police reports is not good enough. I’m off investigating the mysteries of anonymous bloggers’ posts. Back in a jif…

  22. Ken
    Ken says:


    DO NOT quit your day job. You don’t cut it as a poem writer! Nor do you cut it as a person who can accurately predict my life.

    Here is a hint for you – everything you wrote in your little ditty above – as it relates to me – turn it upside down and do it backwards – and poof – you got me!


    I know you are way to busy to understand facts. It’s so much easier to just spout off what you think and call it fact than it is to do less than 30 seconds of research.

    Let me give you a small hint:

    Google this phrase EXACTLY, and you will learn something:

    “UH Hilo Student Attacked in Women’s Restroom”

    PS – you will have to READ the posts that come up!

  23. Ken
    Ken says:

    PS to Kathryn:

    Who is this “anonymous” blogger’s posts you are referring to?

    If its me, please explain how “Kathryn” is any more “non anonymous” and/or definitive as to who you are than “Ken” is to who I am?

  24. Literary Agent
    Literary Agent says:

    Mr. Greg,
    Our agency is extremely interested in representing you as a Poet, to major publications internationally.

    You may indeed wish to “keep your day job” as the angry and bitter Mr. Ken suggests; But our Agency recognizes your raw talent, and is prepared to offer you a mid two figure signing bonus for the right;…..No, make that the privilege, of presenting your work to literary entities such as The New Yorker and Harpers magazine.

    As a creative soul you no doubt have had negative input concerning your work. We only ask that you ignore the jealous and covetous doubters that are always present, and press on.

    Coincidentally, we have an adage here in the literary field called the “Ken Principle”. The “Ken Principle” states that sometimes, no matter how many times you flush…….and flush…….there’s always that one little floater that just won’t go down.

    Be strong ye Bard of Puna, be strong.

  25. Ken
    Ken says:

    @Literary Agent

    Got a hypothetical question here for you.

    Let’s say your new client accepts your offer.

    You get your legal beagles’ together, ink out a 45 page deal, sign it, and it’s all smiles and high fives and maybe even dinner at Morton’s Steak House. I assume being the big Literary Agent you are, the Corporate Headquarters are in New York City, or maybe Los Angeles.

    Now – a few weeks go by, you have advanced your client around 500K, spent another 500K on publicity, news ads, maybe even hit a few talk show circuits, you know, like Ellen, maybe Dr. Phil, maybe even Oprah does a special interview.

    All is going great. You are counting on that big commission check. Maybe even your agency is publically held – and the stock has gone up through the roof! Those options you got a few years ago are worth maybe a few hundred thou – maybe even close to a mil. The CEO tells you to move into the “corner office.”

    Then you get word that your client has been accused of rape.

    The news hits the press like another Justin Bieber being shirtless with his underwear hanging out incident.

    Your legal beagles get together.

    Lots of red faces and whispers in the big Corporate Board Room.

    Meanwhile your client is screaming “innocent.”

    The press just keeps hitting your agency up for comment.

    The CEO calls you in to his office.

    You got to let your new client go says the CEO.

    Now you finally read that contract where those really smart legal beagles wrote in a moralities clause.

    You let your client go under that damn moralities clause.

    Your agencies stock tumbles.

    The press just keeps beating you and beating you.

    You personally take a hit of what could have been over a mil on commissions and stock options. The agency itself has over a mil now to report in losses.

    A few weeks go by.

    The “victim” who claimed your client raped her says “I lied.”

    Now what you gonna do???

    And remember thru all of this, “be strong ye Bard of Literary Agency!”

  26. Rick Damerville
    Rick Damerville says:

    Under Hawaii law a false report of a crime is a misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail. IT happens more often than you might think. Most cases do not even come to the attention of the media. Ken is right. For the person wrongly accused the result can be devastating both personally and financially. If the liar takes it further by testifying falsely, it becomes a felony.
    Many years ago I was supervising a new public defender doing her first jury trial. After the first three witnesses testified, she turned to me and gasped “Rick, these witnesses are lying.” My response was “Welcome to the practice of law.”
    Thank the detectives who did their jobs.

  27. greg
    greg says:

    No one has argued that filing a false report isn’t serious. Ken would have us believe that it is more serious than rape; which is ludicrous.

  28. Ken
    Ken says:


    Never said that.

    What I said is accusing a “named person” of rape that never happened is worse than actual rape itself.

  29. Kathryn
    Kathryn says:

    KEN SAID: “actual “named suspect””

    KEN SAID: “Telling a lie about it (rape) fits somewhere in-between murder and actual rape.”

    KEN SAID: “…and especially going so far as to name a suspect, fits in between that of murder and rape.”

    KEN SAID: “…she testified under oath that the “named suspect” committed this attack.”

    KEN SAID: “One name: Brian Banks.”

  30. Ken
    Ken says:


    First – if you want to use the cut and paste feature, which is a good thing, but you do not cut and paste words that truncate something before or after your cut and pasted words that would alter what was originally said.

    For example, you cut and pasted:

    KEN SAID: “…she testified under oath that the “named suspect” committed this attack.”

    But you left off the words “What if…..” in the beginning of the sentence.

    Kind of dramatically changes the meaning very much don’t you think?

    Also, do you have any idea who Brian Banks is?

    In the end, yes, I do feel that if someone says “Name of Person” raped me – when in fact a rape or assault never occurred, has committed a crime somewhere in-between murder and rape.

    Other than that, what is the point of your post?

  31. Ken
    Ken says:


    That may or may not be true, but let’s just hope you or someone you know or are related to never has someone, for whatever reason, accuse you of committing a terrible crime that in the first place never happened and was a result of them lying and of course, you never committed.

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *