While in office, Keith has launched several important initiatives aimed at helping victims, protecting citizens and enhancing public safety. Among these are:
Honolulu Family Justice Center
Following the model of similar facilities across the nation, the center will provide a variety of services for victims of domestic violence in a single location. But the Honolulu Family Justice Center will also provide long-term transitional housing. This will help victims break away from their abusers, regain their self-esteem, attain job skills and make new lives for themselves.
Pono, a trained and certified courthouse dog, soothes and comforts child victims and helps them provide testimony at trial. Pono has received approval to appear with child witnesses during trials in District Court and Circuit Court. The innovative use of trained dogs in the courtroom is gaining traction across the country and more jurisdictions are
introducing similar programs.
Hawaii International Drug Trafficking Summit
This event brought together drug prosecutors from several countries, district attorneys from 10 mainland jurisdictions, and federal, state and county law enforcement officials from Hawaii. The summit helped foster a spirit of cooperation and forged ties that will enable law enforcement to target the sources of drug distribution.
The prosecutor’s office was instrumental in the enactment in 2012 of new laws targeting the growing use of computers in criminal activity. One of these – Act 325, which authorizes law enforcement officials to retrieve computer records held in another state for use as evidence – led to identity theft and theft charges against five New York residents who came to Waikiki and went on a buying spree using fraudulently encoded credit cards.
The extradition of the manager of a squalid puppy mill who had fled to the mainland to avoid prosecution sent a message that Honolulu was serious about animal cruelty.