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Investigation Continues After Police Fatally Shoot Hilo Man Who Allegedly Fired at Officers


Police on the Big Island said an officer shot and killed a man who came out of a house and opened fire on officers responding to a domestic violence call.

When officers arrived at the Hilo home Sunday night, 34-year-old Ryan Y. Santos came out of the rear of the residence and opened fire with a semi-automatic rifle on the officers, the Hawaii Police Department said. Police said the 911 call was made by Santos’ younger brother, and their mother was the target of the domestic violence assault.

One officer, a 13-year veteran, returned fire and hit the man several times, police said.

Santos died at the scene, police said, and an autopsy will be conducted.

Santos fired more than 30 rounds from two different rifles, Chief Paul Ferreira said Monday. Some rounds hit four police vehicles and a neighboring home, he said. No one else was apparently injured.

Ferreira said in an email he anticipates releasing on Tuesday footage from the camera worn by the officer who fired, “which is the most relevant and is being reviewed first.”

Footage from the other officers' body cameras will available as they are reviewed and redacted, he said. “The redaction involves blocking out the facial features of other family members and officers involved, also the mentioning of any officers' names.”

This was the department's first officer-involved shooting this year and the first fatal one since 2018, Ferreira said.

During the shooting, the 91-year-old grandfather of Santos appeared to go into cardiac arrest. Police said he was taken to the Hilo Medical Center emergency room, where he was later pronounced dead. An autopsy will determine the exact cause of death.

The officers involved have been put on administrative leave and have not yet been publicly identified. The department is investigating.

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Zoe Dym is a news producer at Hawaiʻi Public Radio.
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