July 24 (UPI) — An active-duty Marine allegedly stabbed his estranged wife to death during an argument on a highway in Hawaii as bystanders tried to restrain him, police said.
Bryant Tejeda-Castillo, 29, allegedly stabbed Dana Alotaibi, 27, multiple times around 6:18 p.m. on Wednesday off Interstate H-3 near the Kamehameha Highway, Lt. Deena Thoemmes with the Honolulu Police Department said in a news conference Thursday.
Arrest records show that Tejeda-Castillo has been detained for second-degree murder and is currently in police custody.
“The witnesses tried to restrain the male and at the same time render aid to the victim. The male then fled into a nearby brush area,” Thoemmes said.
“Arriving officers were pointed to his location and they were able to apprehend him. The male reportedly used the same knife that he was in possession of at the time of his arrest and injured himself.”
Tejeda-Castillo and Alotaibi were transported to a local hospital where she was pronounced dead around 8:31 p.m. that night.
“It has been determined that the victim and the male were married and had recently been going through marital problems,” Thoemmes said.
“At the time of incident, they were arguing before he stabbed her multiple times that caused her fatal injuries.”
Thoemmes said that detectives will be reviewing past domestic violence cases that were documented and undocumented and social media posts.
Alotaibi detailed the abuse she had endured in her marriage in a series of videos shared to YouTube before her death. The videos, viewed by UPI, were confirmed by Hawaii News Now and the New York Daily News.
In one of the videos, Alotaibi detailed how Tejeda-Castillo allegedly “threatened me to get me killed” and said he had been “physically abusive countless of times.”
“He’s hit me, beat me, choked me, knocked me out conscious, slammed me on the floor kicking my spine having me to seek medical help,” Alotaibi said.
“I didn’t file a report for every incident but the times I did, 14 times, military police informed his command and Bryant’s only punishment was to get sent to the barracks for a period of time.”
Alotaibi can be seen in a photo on her Facebook page wearing a formal black dress arm-in-arm with Tejeda-Castillo wearing his dress blues. She was asked in a comment on the image from June if the couple was still together.
“Not after I get him NJPD again,” Alotaibi responded, using the military acronym for non-judicial punishment.
Alotaibi’s mother, Natalia Cespedes, told Hawaii News Now that her daughter had sent her pictures and messages documenting the alleged abuse.
“She sent me like a picture with all these bruises all over her body,” Cespedes said.
Alotaibi’s friends told Hawaii News Now that she was 13 weeks pregnant with her current boyfriend after she filed for divorce from Tejeda-Castillo in November 2021 and had planned to move back to Virginia to be with her family.
“Bryant got away with everything. His command covers for him and now, with the latest threat to have me killed being brushed under the rug, it’s ridiculous. Bryant still holds his job position. Are Marines allowed to threaten to kill their wives?” Alotaibi said on YouTube before her death.
“I feel scared and hopeless. If you have any advice or guidance on how to escalate this situation, please help. I can’t go home because he threatened to have me killed there, I can’t stay here because I literally want to die.”