6 Arrested on Maui During Solar Telescope Protest
On Maui early this morning, two women and four men were arrested by Maui police as they attempted to block the passage of a large vehicle convoy hauling equipment up Haleakalā for a new solar telescope—the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope—according to a joint news release from the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, Maui Police Department and Haleakalā National Park on Wednesday, Aug. 2, 2017.
The protesters were among more than 100 who gathered at the intersection of Kula Highway and Old Haleakalā Highway beginning at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 1.
By midnight, an estimated 60 people were engaged in a peaceful protest.
The equipment convoy, four semi-trucks pulling wide-load trailers and led by a half dozen police vehicles, reached the entrance to Haleakalā National Park at 6 a.m. and Science City near the summit between 7:30 and 7:45 a.m.
More than 60 law enforcement personnel from the Maui Police Department, Haleakalā National Park and the state DLNR Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement participated in the operation.
Prior to the arrival of the convoy at Kula and Old Haleakalā Highways, a dozen protesters connected themselves with PVC piping to form a human chain across the road.
Police officers lifted the prone protestors to the highway’s shoulder to give the big rigs adequate turning radius.
One man who was arrested was taken to the emergency room before being booked.
The other five people arrested, were transported to either the Wailuku or Kīhei police stations.
All were released on their own personal recognizance and will have court appearances.
They face charges including disorderly conduct, obstructing a highway, failing to obey a police officer and/or resisting arrest.
This information was provided by the authorities; individuals are considered innocent unless and until they are proven guilty.
All solar telescope protest images and video courtesy of DLNR. Aug. 1, 2, 2017.