East Hawaii News

Asuncion Charged With 13 Counts; Bail Set at $1.5 Million

July 23, 2014, 5:17 PM HST
* Updated July 24, 5:34 PM
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Riley Asuncion, the 38-year-old Pahoa man accused of trying to run over two police officers on Monday, had his bail set today at more than $1.5 million after being charged with 13 offenses.

They include three counts of first-degree attempted murder, each of which carries a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Police today said Asuncion had hijacked the pink sports utility vehicle that he was driving when he allegedly tried to run down the officers Monday on Stainback Highway.

Investigators determined that Asuncion had illegally gotten into the SUV of a 30-year-old female acquaintance Monday morning without her knowledge.

As she was driving on Kilauea Avenue in downtown Hilo, he surprised her from the back seat, assaulted her and gained control of the vehicle, police said. The woman was able to escape from the vehicle on Kinoole Street near Haihai Street.

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Officers responding to a report of what appeared to be a domestic incident located the vehicle in the Panaewa area of Hilo.

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Asuncion allegedly tried to ram a police vehicle and then fled to Stainback Highway, where he turned onto a side road and then turned around, allegedly driving toward two police officers who had exited their patrol cars.

The officers fired three shots toward the approaching SUV, which continued a short ways down the highway before stopping. Asuncion was apprehended a short distance away.

Police said he was treated at Hilo Medical Center for a superficial wound to his torso before being released Monday night.

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Other charges filed today against Asuncion include two counts of assault, and one count each of kidnapping, terroristic threatening, unauthorized entry of a motor vehicle, car theft, reckless driving, theft, driving without a license and resisting an order to stop.

Asuncion’s total bail was $1,521,000. He remained in the Hilo cellblock pending an initial court appearance on Thursday.

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