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Byran Koji UYESUGI





Classification: Mass murderer
Characteristics: Revenge
Number of victims: 7
Date of murders: November 2, 1999
Date of arrest: Same day
Date of birth: 1959
Victims profile: Christopher Balatico, 33; Ford Kanehira, 41; Ronald Kataoka, 50; Ronald Kawamae, 54; Melvin Lee, 58; Peter Mark, 46, and John Sakamoto, 36 (co-workers)
Method of murder: Shooting (9mm Glock)
Location: Honolulu, Hawaii, USA
Status: Sentenced to life in prison without parole on August 8, 2000

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byran uyesugi the shooting the trial

The Xerox murders was a mass murder in which a Xerox service technician, Byran Koji Uyesugi (born 1959), in Honolulu, Hawaii killed seven of his co-workers on November 2, 1999. This was the worst mass murder case in the history of Hawaii. The case also heightened awareness of workplace violence in Hawaii and elsewhere.

Uyesugi's Early life

Born in Honolulu, Hawaii, Uyesugi lived in the Nuuanu neighborhood of Honolulu. While attending Roosevelt High School, Uyesugi was a member of the school's Army JROTC chapter and was a member of the school's riflery team. Classmates remembered him as a quiet student who never got into trouble.

According to his brother Dennis, Uyesugi crashed their father's car and hit his head on the windshield shortly after graduating high school in 1977 coming home from a graduation party and was never the same.

Uyesugi had been employed by Xerox as a technician since 1984. Among his hobbies was raising and breeding goldfish and koi, which he would sell to local pet stores. He also had an extensive collection of firearms, and at the time of the murder had as many as 25 guns registered in his name dating back to 1982. Police also recovered 11 handguns, 5 rifles and 2 shotguns from Uyesugi's father.

Build up to shooting (trouble at work)

According to testimony from Uyesugi's father, Hiroyuki, Uyesugi was normal until he started working for Xerox in 1984. Then when Hiroyuki's wife (Byran's mother) died in 1988, Byran started to complain that he had a poking sensation in his head.

Uyesugi's troubles apparently began soon after he was transferred to another workgroup. He began making unfounded accusations of harassment and product tampering against fellow repairmen, who had great difficulty placating his anger.

Former co-workers who knew him reported the other members of his team allegedly ostracized him, making him feel isolated and withdrawn. His anger was such that he reportedly made threats against other co-workers' lives.

In 1993, he was ordered to undergo psychiatric evaluation and anger management courses after he kicked in and damaged an elevator door for which he was arrested. Uyesugi was arrested for third degree criminal property damage.

Coworkers told Dr. Michael Welner, a forensic psychiatrist who interviewed Uyesugi prior to trial, that as early as 1995, Uyesugi was openly speaking of carrying out a mass shooting at the workplace were he ever to be fired.

The psychiatrist who examined him at the time of this arrest found that Uyesugi suffered from a delusional disorder and paranoia, but found him not to be dangerous. Byran Uyesugi reported experiencing auditory (voices in his head) and visual (a black shadow following him) hallucinations. Byran alleged that there was a conspiracy, and that his home was bugged with listening devices. He felt that his co-workers were engaged in patterns of harassment, back stabbing behavior, and spreading of rumors.

In 1993, Uyesugi told his brother that a shadow pinned him down. The family had their house blessed by a Shingon priest in 1997 hoping to help him, but even the minister suspected Uyesugi had a mental illness. Later that year, Uyesugi's father suggested that he see a psychiatrist. Uyesugi did not.

In the period leading up to the shooting, Xerox management increasingly committed to phasing out the copier that Uyesugi had been servicing. He resisted learning the new machine, fearing that he could not keep up with its technical demands. After working around his refusal to train on the new machine, Uyesugi’s manager insisted on November 1, 1999 that he would begin training the next day.

In his interview with forensic psychiatrist Michael Welner, M.D., who examined Uyesugi when the defendant brought an insanity defense, Uyesugi reasoned that because he would refuse to undertake the training, management would then fire him. As he told Dr. Michael Welner, “I decided to give them a reason to fire me.”

The day of the shooting

On the morning of November 2, 1999, Uyesugi reported to work at the Xerox building and opened fire with a 9mm Glock, killing his supervisor and six co-workers and firing in the direction of another co-worker who fled the building. After the shooting, Uyesugi fled in a company van.

Police closed down several streets in downtown Honolulu as they investigated the crime scene. By mid-morning, the police had Uyesugi cornered in the mountains above downtown Honolulu. After a nearly five-hour standoff, Uyesugi surrendered to police shortly before 3 p.m.


  • Christopher Balatico, 33

  • Ford Kanehira, 41

  • Ronald Kataoka, 50

  • Ronald Kawamae, 54

  • Melvin Lee, 58

  • Peter Mark, 46

  • John Sakamoto, 36

Trial and incarceration

Forty-year-old Byran Uyesugi's month long trial began on May 15, 2000. He pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity and claimed that he felt like an outcast at work and that he feared his colleagues were conspiring to have him fired.

Dr. Park Dietz and Dr. Daryl Matthews testified for the defense that he was insane, citing the delusions about how others were tampering with his fish. Dr. Michael Welner testified for the prosecution that although Mr. Uyesugi was in his opinion a schizophrenic, he carried out the shooting because he was angry that he would be fired for insubordination, and that his own account of concealment before the crime demonstrated that he knew what he had done was wrong.

The jury found him sane and guilty of seven murders and one attempted murder. He received a sentence of life without chance of parole. Hawaii does not have the death penalty.

He appealed his conviction. In 2002, the State of Hawaii Supreme Court upheld Uyesugi's conviction. In 2004 Uyesugi was considering fighting his conviction based on Rule 40, inadequate representation by his lawyers in his first trial.

In 2005, Xerox and the hospital that examined Uyesugi settled a lawsuit brought by the families of the shooting victims, who felt that both had ignored clear signs of Uyesugi's mental instability.

Uyesugi is now being held in Tallahatchie County Correctional facility in Tutwiler, Mississippi. This is due to overcrowding and inadequate facilities to house a prisoner in isolation at Halawa Correctional Facility.


Xerox vacated the premises at 1200 N. Nimitz Highway after the shooting, and they stood idle until 2004, when the producers of the TV show Lost built a sound stage there to film indoor scenes.


7 killed at Hawaii Xerox; repairman surrenders

Manhunt leads to long standoff

November 3, 1999

HONOLULU - A 40-year-old Xerox Corp. repairman allegedly shot and killed seven co-workers yesterday in the country's latest workplace shooting and the worst mass murder in Hawaii history.

Residents of the 50th state awoke yesterday morning to a drama that turned into a protracted standoff with police and ended with the suspect's surrender in midafternoon.


Gunman in Hawaii kills 7 of his Xerox colleagues

Surrenders after 5-hour standoff

November 3, 1999

In the latest outburst of workplace violence, a disgruntled copier repairman fatally shot seven co-workers Tuesday morning, then surrendered after a five-hour standoff, police said.

Police believe Byran Uyesugi, a 15-year Xerox employee, shot seven fellow copier technicians at about 8 a.m. (noon CST) before fleeing in a company van with a gun. He eventually stopped several miles away in a leafy, residential neighborhood, where police began negotiating with him.


Xerox employee snaps, kills 7

Wordt mass murder in hawaiian history

The Cincinnati Post

November 3, 1999

Hiro Uyesugi remembers his son losing his temper only once during 15 years at the Xerox Corp., when he kicked an elevator door a few years ago and had to undergo anger management counseling.

But nothing in Byran Uyesugi's history hinted at the bloodshed that erupted at Xerox's offices on Tuesday, when police say he walked into a second-floor meeting room and shot seven co-workers to death.


Hawaii shooting motive a mistery

Xerox denied it had plan to dismiss suspect

Detroit Free Press

November 4, 1999

Police and relatives on Wednesday still wondered why a Xerox repairman who collected rare goldfish would kill seven coworkers in the largest mass shooting in Hawaii's history.

Xerox, in a statement, denied it had planned to terminate 40-year-old Byran Uyesugi after 15 years. "Contrary to media reports, Xerox had no intention of laying off Mr. Uyesugi," the company said.


Hawaii repairman pleads innocent to killing co-workers

The Commercial Appeal

November 6, 1999

HONOLULU - The copier repairman accused of calmly walking into a Xerox Corp. parts warehouse and gunning down seven members of his work team pleaded innocent Friday to multiple murder charges.

Byran Uyesugi, 40, was ordered held on $7 million bail pending a preliminary hearing Tuesday on one count of first-degree murder and seven counts of second-degree murder.

Under Hawaii law, the first-degree murder charge covers multiple killings. It carries a mandatory sentence of life imprisonment without parole.


Accused killer at Xerox faced rebuke for light workload, prosecutor says

The Commercial Appeal

November 10, 1999

A copier repairman accused of gunning down seven of his Xerox Corp. co-workers last week was about to be reprimanded for not working as hard as his colleagues, the city prosecutor said Tuesday.

The revelation came after Byran Uyesugi was indicted by a grand jury on charges of murder and attempted murder. He remains held on $7 million bail pending another court hearing next week.

No motive has been disclosed.


Accused Gunman Faced Work Reprimand

Possible Motive Cited in Xerox Shooting

Nov. 10, 1999

HONOLULU (AP) -- Seven Xerox Corp. employees allegedly shot dead by a co-worker were planning to talk with him about his lagging workload the day of the shooting, a prosecutor said.

Byran Uyesugi was not going to be fired, and the gathering was not to be "just a meeting to pick on him," city prosecutor Peter Carlisle said Tuesday.

His comments shed some light on what may have motivated Uyesugi's alleged Nov. 2 attack. No motive has been disclosed.

A grand jury indicted Uyesugi on Tuesday on charges of murder and attempted murder. He remains held on $7 million bail pending another court hearing next week.

If convicted, Uyesugi could face life imprisonment without parole. Hawaii does not have the death penalty.

Uyesugi, 32, is accused of walking into the Xerox parts warehouse and firing a 9 mm handgun 28 times at six colleagues and a supervisor. All seven men died.

Five died in a conference room where the meeting was to take place, according to a police affidavit. An employee in another room was uninjured, though two others there were killed.

Carlisle also said an eighth worker was shot at as he fled down a staircase, but was not hurt.

Xerox president G. Richard Thoman stressed last week that Uyesugi was not about to be fired. Xerox officials refused to discuss Uyesugi's work history, citing employee confidentiality rules.

Company spokesman Jeffrey Simek said Tuesday the company had "no indication ... that the employee had cause to fear for the security of his job."

Defense attorney Jerel Fonseca has said he is exploring an insanity defense for Uyesugi.


Xerox Shooting Suspect Pleads Innocent

$7 Milion Bail Revoked; Jan. 18 Trial Date Set

Nov. 16, 1999

HONOLULU (AP) -- The copier repairman charged with killing seven of his Xerox co-workers has pleaded innocent to all nine counts of a grand jury indictment.

A Circuit Court judge on Monday then revoked Byran Uyesugi's $7 million bail and set a Jan. 18 trial date.

The 40-year-old Uyesugi is accused of going on a shooting spree Nov. 2 at a Xerox Corp. parts warehouse. Six of his fellow technicians and a supervisor were killed.

No motive has been released, but prosecutors have said the victims were gathering for a morning meeting to discuss Uyesugi's light workload, among other things.

At least 28 bullet casings from a 9 mm semiautomatic handgun were found at the scene, authorities said. Uyesugi surrendered to police after a five-hour armed standoff.

Uyesugi was indicted last week on one count of first-degree murder, seven counts of second-degree murder and one count of attempted murder in the second-degree.

Under state law, first-degree murder covers multiple killings and carries a penalty of life imprisonment without parole. Hawaii has no death penalty.

Uyesugi was charged with attempted murder for allegedly firing at, and missing, a colleague who was fleeing down the stairs.


Xerox shooting trial set for May 15

24 November 1999

A trial date has been set for the Xerox shootings. Despite protests from prosecutors, the murder trial for the copy machine repairman accused of killing 7 co-workers has been pushed back until May 2000.

As Beth Hillyer reports, the delay gives attorneys more time to prepare Byran Uyesugi's defense

Prosecutors are pushing for a speedy trial in March.


Hawaii Office Massacre Suspect Fit for Trial

Man Charged With Killing Seven Co-Workers

Feb. 3, 2000

HONOLULU (AP) -- A copier repairman accused of killing seven of his Xerox Corp. co-workers last November is mentally fit to stand trial, a state judge ruled Wednesday.

Judge Michael Town ruled after both prosecutors and defense attorneys stipulated that 40-year-old Byran Uyesugi was mentally competent for the case to proceed toward a May 15 trial date.

Town also granted a defense motion sealing parts of a report by a court-appointed panel of doctors who examined Uyesugi to determine if he's competent to assist in his own defense.

Both sides argued that making certain parts of the report public could prejudice Uyesugi's right to a fair trial.

Uyesugi has pleaded innocent to murder charges in the Nov. 2 shootings. He is being held without bail.


Hawaii man guilty of killing 7 at Xerox

Akron Beacon Journal

June 14, 2000

A Xerox copier repairman was convicted of murder yesterday for fatally shooting seven co-workers in Hawaii's worst mass murder.

Jurors rejected the insanity defense for Byran Uyesugi, who faces up to life in prison. Hawaii does not have the death penalty. The defense did not dispute that Uyesugi, 40, shot and killed the seven Xerox Corp. employees on Nov. 2, but he pleaded innocent by reason of insanity.


Xerox gunman gets life

The Cincinnati Post

August 9, 2000

A Xerox employee who gunned down seven co-workers last November was sentenced Tuesday to life in prison without parole. Byran Uyesugi was convicted in June of killing the seven men and trying to kill an eighth. Hawaii has no death penalty. Uyesugi was impassive as bereaved family members spoke in court. His attorney said Uyesugi believes he was justified in killing the men because he felt they were trying to have him fired.


Hawaii Gunman kills seven

The standoff has ended in Honolulu, where police have arrested a man who allegedly shot and killed seven people at a Xerox Corp. plant in Honolulu, before fleeing in a company van.

The armed suspect was cornered by police in a residential neighborhood northeast of the shooting scene. Negotiators had been talking with him through a bullhorn for hours and he could be seen pacing back and forth outside the van.

Armed with what appeared to be a 9mm handgun, the man walked into a Xerox building on the North Nimitz Highway, a few miles from the downtown area, shortly after 0800 local time (1800 GMT) and began shooting. Five victims were found dead in a conference room in the building on North Nimitz Highway, a few miles from downtown, and two other bodies were found nearby, police said.

"It appears as though it was a disgruntled employee who snapped," Honolulu Mayor Jeremy Harris said.

Ambulance teams that went into the building found a "grisly" scene, said Richard Soo of the city fire department.

Police identified the gunman as Byran Koji Uesugi, 40, an employee in Xerox's technical services division. Sam Anoulack, another Xerox employee, said Uesugi had worked in the building for around 10 years.

Police cordoned off a half-mile area around the vehicle, which is near the Hawaii Nature Center, a popular conservancy for schoolchildren. About 60 fourth-graders and 12 chaperones from Hickam Elementary School were on a nature hike at the time when police told them to get to higher ground.

About 10 nearby homes were evacuated.

"We are hopeful we're going to be able to negotiate a peaceful settlement," Deputy Police Chief Mike Carvalho said.

All seven victims were male Xerox employees who were shot on the second floor of the two-story building, authorities said. They ranged from age from 33-58. No other people were injured.

Mr Uesugi was a member of his high school rifle team and had up to 17 weapons registered in his name.

"This could have been much, much worse," the mayor said.

Police said the whereabouts of Mr Uesugi's wife were unknown and were a cause of concern. She did not report to work on Tuesday.

Uesugi is no stranger to authorities. According to the Hawaii Criminal Justice Data Center, he was found guilty of driving under the influence in 1985, had his license suspended and was sentenced to 72 hours community service and a $200 fine.

Honolulu police say Uesugi was also arrested at a Xerox facility in 1993 while he was an employee there, but he was never charged.

In another incident he was charged with 3rd degree criminal property damage for kicking a wall and an elevator door after a flare up at work. No other information is available on this incident.

 Uesugi was denied a gun permit in 1994 for unknown reasons but he was allowed to keep an extensive collection of handguns that he had purchased and registered over a 10-year period leading up to 1992.

Uesugi was denied a permit to buy an 18th gun in 1994, following his arrest for criminal property damage at the same Xerox building -- an incident described by police as a "flare-up at the office." No one was injured in that episode.

In a company statement, Xerox said, "This is a tragic event. Our foremost concern is for the safety and security of our employees and for the comfort of the families of the victims."

The shooting spree, the worst in the history of Hawaii, is the latest in a series of killings in US workplaces this year.

The list of victims:

  • Melvin Lee, 58

  • Ron Kawamae, 54

  • Ron Kataoka, 50

  • Peter Mark, 46

  • Ford Kanehira, 41

  • John Sakamoto, 36

  • Jason Balatico, 33


Uyesugi's background

40-year-old Byran Uyesugi worked for more than 15 years as a technician who serviced Xerox company machines and spent most of his time at the Nimitz warehouse. Co-workers didn't know much about him, but were worried about the way he handled his stress. Linda Hosek joins us in the newsroom more about the alleged gunman.

This is an employee who rarely missed work and arrived every day in an aloha shirt and slacks. Co-workers said he had a lot of knowledge about his job, but no social skills.

Byran Uyesugi was a recluse, and a recluse with a gun collection. Police say he had 17 firearms registered in his name. Co-workers say he wasn't violent, but they could see stress building from personal interactions at work. They also said they worried about this stress because they knew about his gun collection.

In that vein, a security guard said Xerox brought in a crisis management team about three years ago because officials felt Uyesugi was "out of control." Uyesugi apparently was leaving threatening notes that depicted a gunman shooting co-workers.

The guard said Uyesugi said he that was overwhelmed by his workload and company quotas for technicians. The guard said he admitted himself to a local hospital for mental health treatment on the advice of the crisis treatment.

A co-worker said Uyesugi was scheduled for training on another machine and was one of the last technicians to get trained on that model. The co-worker also said that she doesn't think that Uyesugi planned the shooting, that he just snapped.

Uyesugi was convicted in 1984 of drunken driving. Co-workers said he was unmarried and had no children. In addition to guns, Uyesugi also collected fish and cigars and even gave some of his fish to co-workers.

Uyesugi's father issued a statement through his attorney. He said the family would like to express its deepest sympathy and condolences to the victims and their families. He also said the family is trying to understand what happened today and they offer their prayers during this tragedy.

The massacre in the Xerox building goes down as the worst mass murder in Hawaii's history and one of the worst office killings in the country. Police say the shootings took place in the Xerox building in the 1200 block of Nimitz Highway. The suspect them calmly left in a Xerox van and headed to the Makiki area where he was arrested this afternoon. We begin our team coverage with Darren Pai who's live in front of the Xerox building where it all began.

(Darren) Well it's a story that's become perhaps all too familiar these days, a workplace tragedy that ended in gunfire and death. In this case, seven deaths of men between the ages of 33 and 54 all whom may have worked closely with their alleged killer.

It started as a normal day at the Xerox service center in Iwilei, one that quickly turned tragic. At 8:10 a.m., technician Byran Uyesugi arrived at work armed with a handgun.

"He entered the building, proceeded to the second floor, and fired several shots in two separate rooms. Seven male employees were found dead at the scene," said the police in their statement.

The evidence indicates Uyesugi went on a shooting spree as police evidence technicians found two 9mm ammunition shell casings. Considering the number of shots, it's possible that Uyesugi emptied his gun and reloaded to continue his rampage.

"It may be a reload if its a 9mm 15 round cartridge then it would be a reload," said the police.

Xerox employees say the company organizes its technicians into work teams. At least four of the victims were members of Uyesugi's team. Other employees were loading parts in a warehouse located in the rear of the building when they heard what sounded like clanging metal. It didn't take long to learn those sounds were gunshots and for the fear to set in.

Uyesugi drove away in a green company van leaving behind the dead and questions about his motives.

"I can understand how a situation like this bring concern to the residents. Concern to visitors here. Its very very unfortunate," said police.

Now police must still set about the grim task of sorting through the bodies left behind.

"It's a very sad sad situation for me and for all the investigators that were present," said police.

We also spoke with Glenn Sexton the General Manager of Xerox Hawaii who called this the worst tragedy in the company's history. He declined to speculate on the alleged shooter's motives other than to say that Xerox, whom like us, will just have to wait for the results of the police investigation.

Xerox is offering counseling services to its employees here and we're told that the Chief Executive Officer of the company Rick Thoman is flying to Hawaii tonight to offer any additional assistance to Xerox employees.


Byran Uyesugi (7)

On November 2, 1999, Byron Uyesugi, a Xerox copy repairman who believed his coworkers were plotting gainst him, showed up at the offices of Xerox in Honolulu and hunted down seven of his coworkers.

In the opening statements in the Byran Uyesugi trial City Prosecutor Peter Carlisle described murder defendant Byran Uyesugi as a calculating, disgruntled employee out to settle a grudge and defense attorney Rodney Ching described the gunman as sick individual with a history of mental illness who was legally insane at the time of the shootings.

According to Ching the rampage was the product of a delusional mental disorder fueled by the belief that his co-workers were spying on him and sabotaging his work. Uyesugi, Mr. Ching said, believed for years that unseen demons stalked and tormented him, and that the FBI and co-workers bugged his bedroom, mutilated his prized fish, stole his woodwork and put sugar in his gas tank. Against such odds, who can blame the man for going on a shooting spree.

In the first day of testimony in the trial of Uyesugi coworker George Moad described his horror and disbelief as he ran to the second floor of Xerox warehouse to see what was going on and stumbled over the bleeding and lifeless bodies of coworkers as he looked for a phone to call 911. "I saw bodies and I couldn't understand, fathom," he testified. "I felt sick."

In fact Moad sued both Uyesugi and the Xerox Corporation for the emotional distress he suffered after seeing the carnage. Attorneys for Xerox argued that the multinational conglomerate could not be held liable for an employee acting outside the scope of his employment. Uyesugi's actions were "privately and personally motivated acts of violence," said lead attorney Crystal Rose. "Xerox didn't hire Byran Uyesugi to murder his co-workers."

According to David Gierlach, Moad's attorney, Xerox knew before the slayings that Uyesugi had threatened to kill co-workers, that he suffered from delusional disorder and that he had a collection of guns. Furthermore the killing spree was motivated in part by Uyesugi's desire to serve Xerox because he thought co-workers were sabotaging his repair work. Xerox denied all charges and tried to have two of the six counts against them dismissed.

During the second week of the trial of rampage killer Byran Uyesugi a psychiatrist who treated him in 1993 said the Xerox copy repairman suffered from deep rooted delusions. In 1993, Uyesugi spent five days in the psychiatric ward at Castle Hospital after he kicked in an elevator door at a customer's building. Upon evaluation, Dr. Denis Mee-Lee found Uyesugi suffered from a major mental illness. "Somewhat of a suspicious distrustful, what we might overall typically call paranoid types of feelings," says Mee-Lee.

According to testimony from co-workers Hawaian rampager Byran Uyesugi was ostracized and isolated at work. One day he told Xerox service technician Clyde Nitta, "I'll take care of them. I'll shoot all of them." Uyesugi one day told co-worker . Nitta described Uyesugi as mild-mannered and quiet. But when Uyesugi spoke of his co-workers, "he got very upset and his demeanor changed," Nitta said.

Nitta said he thought of Uyesugi, who police revealed owned 25 firearms at the time of the shooting, was "a little strange" but not crazy. Russell Inaba, another repair technician, testified he stayed home from work for a week in 1993 after Uyesugi's boss notified him that Uyesugi made threats on his life. When he eventually returned to work, he tried to avoid Uyesugi as much as possible, Inaba said.

Uyesugi told the psychiatrist about co-workers sabotaging his copiers, fellow employees posing as FBI agents and that the government would kidnap his child if he ever had one. Despite his condition, prosecutors argued Uyesugi knew right from wrong. "Individuals have ability to make choices," said Mee-Lee. "And even the most mentally disturbed individuals will usually have some understanding of what they are doing and why they are doing it."

On June 13, 2000, a circuit court jury found Xerox Uyesugi guilty as charged of seven first-degree murder charges. He faces life imprisonment without the possibility of parole. Sentencing was scheduled for August 8.

The jury also found Uyesgui guilty of attempted second-degree murder for shooting and narrowly missing Steven Matsuda in the stairwell of the Xerox building. Defense attorneys had sought an acquittal by reason of insanity. The defense argued that Uyesugi suffered from delusions that began about 10 years ago in which he believed his coworkers were conspiring to discredit him. The state argued although he suffered from a mental disorder, he knew what he was doing what was wrong when he gunned down his seven coworkers. The 12 jurors took less than two hours to deliberate.

Following the conviction, the XEROX Corporation said that although they are sorry for what happened, they accept no blame for the copier repairman's deadly rage. Alluding to how they handled Uyesugi's worsening relationship with his co-workers, Xerox public relations manager Terry Dillman said: "No matter what you do, taking every precaution and taking every step, there will never be a guarantee that something like this won't happen... We believe that Xerox acted as responsibly and reasonably as it possibly could have at each and every turn."

Xerox's post-verdict message did not surprise Honolulu attorney Michael Green, who remarked: "This is called cover your ass," Green said. "The corporate strategy is coming out now, and I would suggest that the families seek attorneys."

On October 12, 2000, Uyesugi asked the Oahu public defender's office to file an appeal to overturn his seven murder convictions because he was denied a fair trial. In June, a jury rejected defense arguments that a delusional disorder had convinced Uyesugi that co-workers were sabotaging his career, spying on him for the federal government and mutilating his prize goldfish that led to his November 2, 1999, deadly workplace massacre. Uyesugi, however, still believes he was wronged and the massacre was justified.

On July 6, 2001, The widow of one of the seven men killed during the rampage filed suit against Uyesugi and three Xerox executives, alleging the three knew or should have known that Uyesugi showed violent tendencies as far back as 1993.

The suit has been the first filed in behalf of family members of the seven killed during the Uyesugi's workplace rampage. The suit was filed by Honolulu attorneys Michael Green, David Gierlach and Debra Kagawa on behalf of Merry Lynn Balatico, whose husband, Jason, was gunned down by Uyesugi who feared he was about to be fired.

The three executives named in the lawsuit were Glenn Sexton, vice president and general manager of Xerox Corp.; James Hughes, identified in the suit as Western region manager of investigations for Xerox; and Tom Trittipo, listed as Western region manager of human resources for Xerox. The suit seeks general, special and punitive damages, the amount of which is to be determined at trial.


Repairman Convicted in Hawaii Murders

Jury Convicts Byran Uyesugi Of Killing Seven Coworkers

CBS News

June 14, 2000

(CBS) Deliberating for less than 90 minutes, jurors in Hawaii Tuesday convicted a former Xerox copier repairman for gunning down seven coworkers last November.

Byran Uyesugi's attorneys took two weeks laying out their claim that he was legally insane when he fatally shot seven co-workers in Hawaii's worst mass killing. Uyseugi was convicted of first-degree murder, which includes multiple murders, and attempted murder, for the shooting of an eighth coworker who survived the attack.

Uuesugi showed no emotion when the verdict was read Tuesday night, reports CBS affiliate KGMB-TV in Honolulu. But relatives of the victims expressed mixed emotions.

"No matter what happens to him, it does not bring my husband back," said Lorna Kanehira. "I pray that he never knows the joy of freedom in his lifetime."

Uyesugi, 40, faces a mandatory life prison term without the possibility of parole when he is sentenced Aug. 8. Hawaii does not have a death penalty.

"There is no acceptable reason to explain why this happened," Xerox spokesman Terry Dillman said. "It's shattered seven families. And it's forever changed, in a very profound way, a very special place in the world."

Uyesugi, a 15-year Xerox employee, fired a 9 mm semiautomatic handgun more than two dozen times at co-workers who had gathered for a meeting to discuss his light workload. Uyesugi surrendered to police after a five-hour armed standoff Nov. 2.

"This happened quite a while ago but it still feels like yesterday," said Reid Kawamae, whose father, Ron, was among those killed.

Defense attorney Jerel Fonseca never denied that his client shot the workers but argued that Uyesugi, an avid gun collector and tropical fish breeder, suffered from a mental illness, either delusional disorder or paranoid schizophrenia, and did not recognize how wrong his actions were.

"A rational mind was not in control that day," Fonseca said during closing arguments Tuesday. "When your rationality is limited, your choices are limited."

Prosecutor Peter Carlisle acknowledged that Uyesugi suffers from a serious mental illness, but contended during the three-week trial that Uyesugi was aware his actions were wrong and killed out of anger.

Carlisle also said Uyesugi didn't meet the definition of legal insanity because he exercised self-control throughout the shootings, from planning to acting to escaping. Uyesugi even purposely chose not to shoot one co-worker who was in the same general area as the seven victims.

After the verdict, Fonseca said, "I think he still doesn't fully understand what he's done and when a person doesn't understand what he's done it's hard for him to show remorse."

Xerox has been scrutinized for the way it handled previous incidents involving Uyesugi, including death threats against co-workers and his outbursts while servicing copy machines.

On Tuesday, the copany said it had set up a $400,000 college scholarship fund for the victims' children.

The shootings tore through the heart of the Aloha State, which has one of the lowest violent crime rates in the nation.

"I think that that was an alarming wake-up call to everyone," Carlisle said. "I certainly thought that we were fairly immune from it. We obviously aren't."



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