Shaylene Iseri filed nomination papers this week to campaign in a special election for county prosecutor, a seat vacated last month by Justin Kollar who had held the job for nearly a decade.

Shaylene Iseri announced this week that she will campaign in a special election for Kauai prosecutor. 

Iseri joins Rebecca Like, Kauai’s acting prosector, in a special primary election to replace Kollar scheduled for Dec. 18, followed by a special general election on Feb. 26.

The winner will serve the remaining three years of Kollar’s term.

The estimated cost to the county to hold the elections is $475,000.

Iseri is a criminal and family law attorney in Lihue who previously served as county prosecutor for four years starting in 2008. Kollar challenged Iseri, and won, in 2012.

As prosecutor, Iseri was a defendant in several lawsuits, including a wrongful prosecution lawsuit filed in 2012 by then-County Councilman Tim Bynum that resulted in a $250,000 settlement payment to the councilman from the county.

That case came on the heels of Kauai County spending hundreds of thousands of dollars in settlements for discrimination cases also involving Iseri. In 2012 the state paid $120,000 to a former deputy prosecutor who said she was harassed because she was white.

Iseri was also a member of the county council in 2004 and reelected in 2006.

Acting Prosecutor Rebecca Like also filed nomination papers to campaign in the December special election for county prosecutor. Courtesy: Rebecca Like/2021

Like, her opponent, has worked in the county prosecutor’s office since 2010, spending the last nine years as third-in-command of a 45-person staff.

Kollar has endorsed Like, saying she’s intelligent, hardworking and “checks every single box that you would want in the person who runs the office.”

Like describes herself as a reform-minded candidate who would work to continue former prosecutor Kollar’s legacy.

Kollar, who left the county on Sept. 30, has accepted a job as chief of staff for the nonprofit Fair and Just Prosecution and plans to relocate to California. He started working for the county in 2008, first as a county attorney, then as deputy prosecutor before winning three consecutive elections to serve as the county’s top prosecutor.

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