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Seven More Cited for Loitering in Closed Lava Zone

June 7, 2018, 11:50 AM HST
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Seven more people were cited Wednesday night, June 6, 2018, by officers from the DLNR Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement (DOCARE) for loitering in a closed area.

Like the 18 people previously cited, the seven allegedly bypassed established checkpoints or were found in closed areas.

Two Puna residents were cited at Bryson Cinder Quarry, past the Papaya Farms Road checkpoint. Officers say the pair got past the checkpoint after a local resident vouched for them saying they were staying at the resident’s home. The two were spotted standing on a puʻu with hot lava hardening around it about 15 yards away. Officers report 27-year-old Taylor Fankhouser and 33-year-old Jessica Devendorf rode bikes to where they were cited.

Five people were cited outside the gate at MacKenzie State Park, which has been closed for the past month. They’re identified as: 62-year-old Robert Chetley of Paradise Park, 30-year-old Jonathan Hensley of Pāhoa, 30-year-old Jeremy Osuna of Kea‘au, 38-year-old Daniel Alexander Records of Kapoho and 52-year-old Maryanne Torres of Opihikao.

All seven people were cited under Hawai‘i County Code for loitering in a closed area. They not only put themselves at risk but potentially endanger the lives of emergency workers and law enforcement if they must be rescued.

This information was provided by the authorities. All suspects are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

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