What would have been Telma Boinville’s 56th birthday next month will serve as yet another reminder to family and friends of her absence, and the bitter reality that no one has been convicted for her death at a Pupukea vacation rental home, nearly five years ago.

Stephen Brown and Hailey Dandurand were arrested within hours of the December 2017 incident and charged with second-degree murder, kidnapping and burglary. Brown was also charged with criminal property damage, and Dandurand was charged with unauthorized entry into a motor vehicle and possession of confidential personal information. The only witness in the case is Boinville’s daughter, who was 8 years old at the time.

Their trial date has been postponed numerous times for various reasons but is now set to begin Oct. 3, according to Jan Kagehiro, spokesperson for the Hawaii State Judiciary.

Hailey Dandurand and Stephen Brown face second-degree murder charges for the grisly slaying of 51-year-old substitute school teacher Telma Boinville at a Pupukea vacation rental home in 2017. Courtesy: Hawaii News Now

Boinville’s death sparked an uproar of heartache and fury in the North Shore community on Oahu. She was a mother, a wife, a friend. She baked, she surfed, and she taught. Tributes on social media overflow in both English and her native language, Brazilian Portuguese. By all accounts, Boinville was and continues to be loved immensely.

Brown and Dandurand pleaded not guilty on all charges. Both have been held at Oahu Community Correctional Center since Dec. 13, 2017.

Now, Boinville’s loved ones ask: “Where is the justice?”

Though the trial is currently set for October, court records show 28 occasions where trials for the defendants appeared on the calendar.

According to the official summary of proceedings, the defendants’ motion to request additional time for preparation was granted eight times before April 2020, and according to Kagehiro, the delay in court can only minimally be attributed to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Brown was originally represented by Darcia Forester, then Nelson Goo. Though it is unclear why Forester withdrew as counsel, Brown cited “irreconcilable differences” and “feeling of ineffective representation from defense counsel” in regards to Goo. On both occasions, Brown said he understood that changing attorneys may cause a delay in the case.

Brown’s current attorney, William Bagasol, was appointed to Brown by the court in February. Bail for Brown is currently set at $1 million.

Meanwhile, Dandurand has also made requests that have led to further postponement.

In April 2019, Dandurand’s attorney, Barry Sooalo, filed a motion to request Dandurand be tried separately, a motion which was revisited multiple times but ultimately denied.

In February 2020, Dandurand claimed that she was indigent and Sooalo indicated he was pursuing the “battered spouse defense” on her behalf, as stated in the court’s official summary of proceedings. Later that year, Dandurand was granted a temporary restraining order against Brown, while they were both in custody. However, Kagehiro confirmed that the defendants are scheduled to be tried together.

Dandurand has repeatedly attempted to request a reduction of her $500,000 bail, as well as supervised release based on the Covid-19 pandemic, all of which were denied.

In March 2021, the court said that Sooalo had failed to hire the necessary experts to interview Dandurand, and questioned the relevancy of the restraining order taken out against Brown, as it was filed three years after Dandurand and Brown had both been arrested and in custody.

Neither Bagasol nor Sooalo responded to recent requests seeking comment.

UPDATE: In a message to Civil Beat, Kevin Emery, husband of Boinville, expressed his frustration in waiting almost 5 years for a trial, one that will force him and his now 13-year-old daughter to relive “the worst day” of their life.

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