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Mayoral Candidate Arrested in Reported Assault at Home Depot

July 18, 2020, 4:49 PM HST
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From left to right: Michael Glendon, Kalena Ho’opi’i and Kamea-Aloha Wong. (PC: Hawai’i Police Department)

A mayoral candidate was among three Puna residents arrested and charged in connection to a reported zip-tie hoax in Hilo’s Home Depot parking lot earlier this month.

Michael Glendon, 38, of Volcano, who is running for Hawai‘i County mayor, was arrested along with 24-year-old Kalena Ho‘opi‘i of Volcano, and 31-year-old Kamea-Aloha Wong of Mountain View. The three are facing assault charges after beating up a 55-year-old Pāhoa man.

Glendon still in custody and is scheduled to appear in Hilo District Court at 1 p.m. on Monday. Hoopii and Wong have made bail and have a court slated for Sept. 1 at 1:30 p.m.

Charges stem from an incident that occurred on July 7. Hawai‘i Police Department’s South Hilo patrol responded to the parking lot shortly after 1:10 p.m. on reports of a disturbance. Upon arrival, officers were contacted by Ho‘opi‘i who reported that she had exited the store and noticed a “zip-tie” attached to her vehicle. In recent weeks there have been rumors and stories on social media regarding zip-ties on vehicles being connected to possible abductions and human trafficking.

According to police, Ho‘opi‘i told officers she had left the area, and then returned a short time later and blocked one of the parking lot entrances with her vehicle.

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“At that time, a 55-year-old Pāhoa man was attempting to exit the parking lot and reportedly entered Ho‘opi‘i’s vehicle in an attempt to move it,” police state of Ho‘opi‘i’s report. “He was then confronted by Ho‘opi‘i and reportedly assaulted her. He was subsequently arrested for second-degree unauthorized entry into a motor vehicle, and third-degree assault.”

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HPD’s Area I Special Enforcement Unit continued its investigation. After reviewing hours of surveillance videos and interviewing witnesses, Hawai‘i County Prosecutor’s Office dropped the charges against the Pāhoa man on July 13.

As detectives continued to investigate the incident, they determined Ho‘opi‘i pulled into the parking lot, exited her vehicle, went into the store and never returned to her vehicle.

“When she entered the store she met up with Wong and then reported to a store associate that there was a ‘zip-tie’ placed on her vehicle while she was within the store,” police say.

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According to surveillance footage, police say, Glendon was seen entering the parking lot approximately one minute after Ho‘opi‘i. At that point, officials state, he moved Ho‘opi‘i’s vehicle to block the Railroad Avenue parking lot entrance. He then blocked two of the remaining entrances with vehicles.

“From the time Ho‘opi‘i exits her vehicle until Glendon moves it, no one else touched her vehicle. Once all three parking lot entrances were blocked, Glendon was observed walking around the parking lot with a ‘Lei O Mano,’ which is a Hawaiian shark tooth war club,” police state.

Surveillance footage shows Glendon, Wong and Ho‘opi‘i, assaulting the Pāhoa man who was attempting to exit the parking lot, according to authorities.

“He was initially punched in the face by Ho‘opi‘i, he is then tackled to the ground by Wong, and Glendon then approaches with the Lei O Mano and repeatedly punches the man about the head, face, and upper body,” officials say.

Arrest warrants were ultimately issued for the three individuals.

On July 16, Ho‘opi‘i was arrested and charged with third-degree assault, and unsworn falsification to authorities. Her bail was set at $2,000.

Wong was arrested and charged with third-degree assault, and second-degree unlawful imprisonment. His bail was set at $2,000.

On July 17, Glendon was arrested and charged for third-degree assault, deadly weapons prohibited, second-degree unlawful imprisonment, and refusal to provide ingress or egress. His bail is set at $7,000.

The Hawaiʻi Police Department cannot confirm any validity of the zip-tie on Ho‘opi‘i’s vehicle, or any other case.

“Reporting such fallacies may not only be illegal, but it also spreads unnecessary fear within our community,” police state.

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