Kona Crime Prevention Committee Honors New Officer
A new member of the Hawai‘i Police Department was recently honored by the Kona Crime Prevention Committee (KCPC) for his proactive policing that resulted in the seizure of a significant amount of narcotics. Police Officer (Recruit) Michael Gusman was named KCPC’s Officer of the Month for June 2021 during a June 25 ceremony at Kealakehe Police Station.
In the early morning hours of March 20, 2021, Officer Gusman was on patrol with his Field Training Officer Ansel Robinson, when he observed a car parked on the side of the road with its running lights on. In the course of conducting a vehicle check, Officer Gusman made contact with the 37-year-old male driver of the vehicle and his 21-year-old passenger, both of Ocean View, who had outstanding warrants and lengthy criminal records.
Taking lead in the investigation, Officer Gusman observed six rounds of ammunition in the vehicle’s center console. After obtaining permission to search the vehicle, he further recovered a syringe, three glass smoking pipes with residue, which later tested positive for methamphetamine, six rifle rounds, and 10 sealed packets of methamphetamine. The methamphetamine packets weighed more than 73 grams, with a street value of $3,000-$9,000. In addition to the large quantity of narcotics, the rifle rounds recovered by Officer Gusman were also noteworthy because they are associated with military-style AR-15/M4 assault rifles.
As a result of the investigation, the vehicle driver was charged with promoting a dangerous drug 2, place to keep firearm ammunition, firearms ownership prohibited, and drug paraphernalia with bail set at $51,250. The female passenger was charged with promoting a dangerous drug 1, place to keep firearm ammunition, and drug paraphernalia with bail set at $50,525.
Every month the Kona Crime Prevention Committee honors a police officer in west Hawaii as their Officer of the Month. Officers are nominated by their supervisors from the various police districts and a winner is selected by the KCPC board of directors. KCPC normally holds a monthly luncheon to honor the officer, however, due to Covid-19 restrictions, no luncheons have been held since March 2020. Instead, KCPC presented plaques to the winners during morning meetings at the Kealakehe Police Station.
All officers selected for Officer of the Month are eligible to be selected as the Kona Crime Prevention Committee’s Officer of the Year.