Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance
Details of Disappearance
Mr. Woita was last seen having an argument with Gregory Awana, with whom he had a prearranged meeting, at about 5:15 p.m. near the Kailua Shopping Center on Kailua Road. The meeting moved from the Kailua area to a home in Manoa. Mr. Woita entered the home and was never seen again. Four hours later, the vehicle he had been driving was found on fire in Waimanalo.
Information almost immediately became available indicating that Mr. Woita, and Gregory Awana, an investigator with the medical examiner's office and a former deputy sheriff, had been in the marijuana business together. Woita felt that he was being cut out of a previously arranged deal and was owed money. Following Woita's disappearance, police surveillance showed Mr. Awana and a family member carrying bags out of the Manoa home and disposing of them in a local landfill. The bags contained marijuana, concrete blocks, and bloody rags. On September 3, Awana and the family member were indicted.
Mr. Awana confessed to killing Mr. Woita, claiming self-defense, by shooting him 3 times in the head. Awana indicated he panicked, drove the SUV to Waimanalo and set it afire. The next day he borrowed a friend's fishing boat, placed Woita's body, wrapped in dark plastic, in it and towed the boat to Kaneohe Bay. He allegedly drove out into the open ocean for an hour and dumped Woita's weighted body and the gun into the ocean. Mr. Woita's body, nor the weapon, have ever been located.
In February 2005, Awana was sentenced to life with the eligibility of parole after a minimum of 15 years served for 2nd degree murder and other offenses. A family member was convicted of hindering prosecution and received 5 years probation.
If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
Honolulu Police Department, Criminal Investigation Division
KPUA AM 670