KPD Shares Details on Mysterious Incident Involving Projectile, Rental Car
April 22, 2021, 2:25 PM HST
* Updated April 22, 3:21 PM
The Kaua´i Police Department has released more information on a mysterious incident that occurred as two visitors to the island drove to their vacation rental on the evening of Saturday, April 17.
Cinda and David Pittman were headed to Hanalei, traveling on Kuhio Highway approximately 15 minutes away from Princeville, when they heard the thud of an unknown projectile collide with their rear passenger-side door. Subsequent examination by the Pittmans and an officer dispatched by KPD to initiate an investigation led to the suspicion the projectile may have been a bullet.
“We called the police. An officer came out and took a report,” Cinda said. “He said it was probably a high caliber rifle and that the shot must have been fired from quite a (distance) because the bullet did not pierce all the way through and end up in the backseat of the car. But it could have.”
Cinda said the KPD officer went on to speculate the incident may have been related to hunters shooting at pig in the area, which is lawful, though not after dark.
Coco Zickos, KPD public information officer, told Big Island Now earlier in the week that the investigation was ongoing and no more information could be provided. On Thursday, April 22, she reached out again with some clarifying information.
KPD confirmed that a report was filed by the visiting couple from Illinois on Sunday, April 18, about an incident that occurred the previous day regarding damage to a white Chrysler S300 rental vehicle.
“A preliminary report states that the driver, a 68-year-old man from Barrington, Illinois, and front passenger of the vehicle, a 67-year-old woman from Barrington, Illinois, were traveling northbound on Kuhio Highway in an area north of Anahola, possibly Moloa´a, on April 17 around 8:45 p.m., when they heard a thump on the passenger side of the vehicle. They indicated that there were no other vehicles in the area at the time,” KPD wrote in an email to Big Island Now.
The statement continues in quotation marks below.
“A follow up report was conducted by Kaua´i Police Department’s Investigative Services Bureau on April 21, which found that there were two distinct, almost concentric depressions on the rear door of the passenger side that did not appear to penetrate the metal. According to this report, the driver and passenger also stated that they did not hear any gun shots or observe any muzzle flashes at the time of the incident.
KPD is unable to positively determine what caused the damage and further forensic studies are being conducted to help provide confirmation.”
The statement noted that the incident was isolated and no other similar reports have been made. Because of that fact, criminal or accidental intent remains unclear. The investigation is ongoing.