Local News

 

Murder Suspect Gets Life in Prison Without Parole

A Makiki man was sentenced to life in prison without parole yesterday for the murder of 81-year-old Edith Skinner in her senior housing complex 25 years ago. Judge Colette Garibaldi said an extended term was necessary for 54-year-old Gerald Austin. State law allows extended sentences for major crimes against people older than 59. Austin's defense attorney argued for parole, saying despite the jury's guilty verdict, Austin never murdered Skinner and added that Austin stayed out of trouble for the past 20 years. He was 29 when Skinner was found dead in her Kalakaua Avenue home in July 1989. Police recovered DNA from her body, but couldn't match it to Austin until 2011. Austin said he had sexual contact with Skinner, but didn't murder her. 

 

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