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HPD Officer Stabbed During Officer-Involved Shooting Identified as 12-Year Veteran on the Force

June 19, 2021, 7:30 AM HST
* Updated June 19, 7:20 AM
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Hawai‘i Police released more details regarding an officer-involved shooting in Hilo where a man was shot and killed and an officer was stabbed in the arm on Friday, June 18.

The suspect fatally shot by officers was identified as a 31-year-old man with no permanent address. He was armed with a knife and a machete when he reportedly stabbed a 12-year veteran officer in the arm during a confrontation in a Hilo home.

This is Hawai‘i County’s second fatal officer-involved shooting within a week, the first occurring on June 13, after officers shot and killed 34-year-old Ryan Yukiharu Santos after he opened fire on law enforcement.

Events of June 18 began when three South Hilo patrol officers were called to a residential alarm and possible burglary at a home located on the 1800 block of Kīlauea Avenue at approximately 11:20 a.m.

“Upon arrival, officers determined that the home had been forcibly entered. Officers entered the vacant home and began to clear the home room by room, calling out that they were the police and making their presence known,” according to an HPD press release.

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While in the home, officers discovered a locked bedroom door. They went outside and performed additional checks on the outside of the house before returning inside to open the locked door.

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When officers got into the room, the release states one of the officers was “immediately attacked by a male suspect with a large knife.” Lt. Rio Amon-Wilkins said the officer had been stabbed in the forearm and the suspect was armed with a machete and a smaller knife.

The injured officer fired his duty weapon at the suspect, police report, adding a second officer, who’s been on the force just over one year, also fired his weapon. The suspect was ultimately killed at the scene.

The injured officer was treated and released from Hilo Medical Center Friday afternoon. A third officer was also present during the incident and didn’t discharge his firearm.

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Officials say all three officers were wearing their issued body-worn cameras, however, video footage from the injured officer’s camera was not recovered.

“Police are investigating the reason this camera did not capture any footage of the incident,” the release stated. “The body-worn camera video footage that was recovered is being reviewed and will be released upon completion.”

Detectives from the Area I Criminal Investigations Section are continuing the criminal investigation into this matter; Detectives from the Office of Professional Standards have opened a standard internal investigation into this incident. The officer involved has been placed on administrative leave.

Authorities are withholding the name of the suspect pending notification of family. An autopsy will be conducted to determine the exact cause of death.

Police ask anyone with information regarding this incident to call Detective Jeremy Kubojiri of the Area I Criminal Investigations Section at 808-961-2378 or send an email to [email protected].

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