East Hawaii News

Puna Officer Honored For Arrest of Wanted Car Theft Fugitive

February 20, 2022, 2:30 PM HST
* Updated February 20, 12:43 PM
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A member of the Hawai‘i Police Department was recently honored by an East Hawai‘i club.

For his proactive efforts and attention to detail in a car theft investigation, Puna officer Calvin Furtado was recognized as Officer of the Month for December 2021 by the Aloha Exchange Club of East Hawai‘i. An officer for less than two-and-a-half years, Furtado has positively impacted the Puna community during his short time with the department, says a press release from HPD.

Officer Calvin Furtado and James Sanborn of the Aloha Exchange Club of East Hawai‘i. (Photo courtesy of Hawai‘i Police Department)

His supervisors cited an investigation in which Furtado apprehended a wanted fugitive as just one of many examples of his hard work and dedication.

At about 3 p.m. Dec. 14, Furtado was patrolling the Orchidland subdivision when he spotted a wanted fugitive as he drove past a residence. The fugitive, who had eluded police capture on numerous occasions, was a person of interest in several stolen vehicle investigations and had outstanding bench warrants.

Coordinating with his beat partner, Furtado approached the residence and caught the fugitive off guard while the suspect was digging through a 2006 Toyota Tacoma pickup truck. The suspect was arrested for his outstanding bench warrants without incident.

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Furtado recognized the truck from a prior auto theft report and had a hunch that it might be the same truck even though it had different rims and tires from when it was originally stolen. In the course of his investigation, Furtado determined that the vehicle had indeed been stolen from a Kea‘au residence in August 2021.

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Further police investigation determined that the vehicle contained a stolen credit card, which the man used to make $499 worth of unauthorized transactions; a zip packet containing crystal methamphetamine; and a glass smoking pipe.

According to the HPD press release, the suspect was charged with unauthorized control of a propelled vehicle, criminal contempt of court, violating terms of being released on bail, second-degree theft, promotion of a dangerous drug and unauthorized possession of personal and confidential information. His bail was set at $46,250.

Each month, the Aloha Exchange Club honors a police officer in East Hawai‘i as its officer of the month. Officers are nominated by their supervisors from the police districts in Area I, including Hāmākua, North Hilo, South Hilo and Puna, and a winner is selected.

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All officers selected as Officer of the Month are eligible to be selected as the club’s Officer of the Year.

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