The sister of a 6-year-old missing but presumed dead Hawaii girl says that she last saw her sibling inside a cage, unable to breathe.
As CrimeOnline previously reported, Isabella Kalua was reported missing on September 12 by her family, according to Interim Police Chief Rade Vanic. Her adoptive parents claimed they put her in bed at around 9 p.m. that night in their Waimanalo home and didn’t see her again.
Police, however, say that Isabella died in August, but the family failed to report her missing until nearly a month later.
Isabella’s adoptive parents, Isaac and Lehua Kalua, were arrested Wednesday on second-degree murder charges for the presumed death of the child, who still has not been found.
During court on Friday, prosecutors presented a conversation between Isabella’s 12-year-old sister and detectives working the case. According to the sister, Isabella was “in the bathroom in a dog cage, duct tape on her mouth and nose, and she didn’t wake up,” a police affidavit presented in court read.
“Lehua then filled the bathtub with water and put (Isabella) in it to see if she would wake up, but it did not work,” court documents read.
The sister told authorities that she helped carry Isabella to a bedroom afterward, but doesn’t know what her adoptive parents did with Isabella’s body.
A few days later, Isaac Kalua went to a hospital and said he had COVID-19 symptoms, although detectives noted that they thought the suspect was only pretending to have symptoms, Fox 5 reports.
Isabella’s sister reportedly told police that she knew Isaac Kalua was pretending because he took time off from work around the same time to “help mom get rid of stuff…evidence.”
The sister also explained that her adoptive parents bought the dog cage from someone online, even though the family doesn’t have a dog. They put Isabella in the cage because she would “sneak around at night and want to eat because she was hungry.”
The parents later told Isabella’s sister to “keep a secret,” according to court documents.
Both suspects remain behind bars without bail.
Anyone who had any interaction with Isabella and her sisters from 2019 through August 2021 should contact Honolulu CrimeStoppers at 808-955-8300 or www.honolulucrimestoppers.org.
Check back for updates.
For the latest true crime and justice news, subscribe to the ‘Crime Stories with Nancy Grace’ podcast. Listen to our latest episode below.
[Feature Photo: Handout]