HPD Identifies Cop Killer as House Fires Rage on O‘ahuJanuary 19, 2020, 1:06 PM HST (Updated January 19, 2020, 1:06 PM)
Two Honolulu police officers are dead, a third is injured and four homes have burned to the ground in the wake of a violent incident that began around 9: 30 a.m. Sunday morning at a residence near Diamond Head.
HPD has identified the suspect in the murders and the fires as Jerry Hanel, who authorities believe died in the flames.
“This is an unprecedented tragedy for not only the City and County of Honolulu but the entire state of Hawai‘i,” said Mayor Caldwell. “I would like to express my deepest condolences to the family and friends of the two officers as well as the entire Honolulu Police Department.”
According to a Hawaii News Now report, the deadly incident began with an attempted eviction at an O‘ahu residence on Hibiscus Drive.
Police were called to the area after Hanel allegedly stabbed his female landlord for attempting to evict him. He then opened fire on officers who responded to the scene.
Hanel then allegedly set fire to the residence, which spread as firefighters waited for an all clear from police, reports quoted witnesses as saying. The fires continued to burn as of early Sunday afternoon, with four houses burnt down and more having sustained fire damage. Multiple police vehicles were also damaged by the blaze.
HNN reported Hanel had a history of violent behavior and making false reports to 911.
Two officers were transported in critical condition to The Queen’s Medical Center, where they later died. A third officer suffered a gunshot wound to the leg. Hanel’s landlord, who has not been identified, was also transported to the hospital. Her condition is unknown.