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Police continue investigation after officers fatally shoot armed man in Waikīkī

Honolulu police car generic.jpg
Sophia McCullough
/
Hawaii Public Radio

Honolulu police fatally shot an armed man following an hours-long barricade in a Waikīkī building on Thursday evening.

Around 1:45 p.m. Thursday, the Honolulu Police Department responded to a call from the Ohia Waikīkī Studios Suites staff to escort a guest off of the property.

Officers heard about eight rounds of gunshots within the fifth-floor unit.

“Shortly after, officers began clearing the rooms on that floor, and rooms across the street from the suspect's unit were also evacuated,” Chief Joe Logan said.

Logan said crisis negotiators were unable to reach the barricaded 48-year-old man, whose identity has not been released.

"Negotiators tried multiple times to establish contact with the suspect, but he refused to respond to their attempts,” Logan said during a Friday morning press conference. “SSD (Special Services Divisions) also deployed a less lethal round into the unit, but the suspect failed to respond to that action."

Logan said that after repeated requests to exit the unit, the man walked into the hallway with his hands in the air holding a gun, which Logan believes was a 9 mm ghost gun, the term used for a firearm without an identifying serial number.

"However, the male continued to advance toward the offices and eventually lowered the hand holding the gun," Logan said. "At that time, two officers fired at the male, striking him twice.”

The man was treated at the scene and taken to the hospital where he died. No officers were injured.

“Our officers are not there to end the life of someone,” Logan said, adding that in 2022 there have been two incidents where officers shot a suspect, this being the second. In 2021, there were six such incidents, with four being fatal. “It's not a common event, but it does happen,” Logan said.

Logan said the department is working to get video footage of the incident from the hotel because SSD officers do not have body cameras.

Logan said incidents this week, including two murders, were not related and was hesitant to connect them to crime trends.

“I don't think this incident portrays that there's additional crime escalating in Waikīkī,” Logan said.

He pointed to the Waikīkī Safe and Sound Initiative, which started up in September as a crime-reduction model to convict repeat offenders and help those with bigger problems, like substance abuse and chronic homelessness, get the help they need.

“We continue to investigate and our officers continue to patrol and respond to calls in the Waikīkī area,” Logan said.

Sabrina Bodon is a general assignment reporter at Hawaiʻi Public Radio. Contact her at sbodon@hawaiipublicradio.org or 808-792-8252.
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