Trial starts in ’09 murder

JOHN BURNETT/Tribune-Herald Deputy Prosecutor Matt Woodward makes a point Monday in Hilo Circuit Court during opening arguments in the murder trial of Patricia Wong, accused in the shooting death of Kaycee Smith in 2009.

Acting Deputy Police Chief Reed Mahuna displays to the jury Monday in Hilo Circuit Court the Browning Hi-Power 9mm semiautomatic pistol police say was used to kill Kaycee Smith in 2009. (JOHN BURNETT/Tribune-Herald)

JOHN BURNETT/Tribune-Herald Patricia Wong, accused of the 2009 slaying of Kaycee Smith, stands Monday during a brief recess in her murder trial in Hilo Circuit Court.



The murder trial of Patricia Wong opened Monday in Hilo Circuit Court with Deputy Prosecutor Matt Woodward telling jurors that the 61-year-old woman shot Kaycee Smith — the 21-year-old rodeo champion Wong called her hanai daughter — to death in 2009 to gain control of Smith’s sizable inheritance.