PAHOA, Hawaii >> A 56-year-old Nanawale man said he has repeatedly crossed county and private property since Monday, violating a ban on non-residents entering a neighborhood inundated by lava, took a selfie of himself in front of the lava and escorted a CBS News crew to the flow.
The admission by Glen Bousquet to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser Friday morning follows the arrest Thursday night of two local residents for investigation of criminal trespass on county land. Hawaii County Civil Defense administrator Darryl Oliveira announced the arrests at a briefing Friday.
"I hope I don’t get arrested," Bousquet said when informed of the arrests. "I’ve been up there eight times since Monday. … I had some people with me."
Bousquet said he has used several routes to get to the flow, including walking behind the county building — and crossing through private backyards.
"As much as I understand trespassing, when I venture out there with the utmost respect, it’s to document it," Bousquet said. "It’s not to abuse anyone. It’s not that dangerous. It was hot stuff. All’s I’m trying to get at is that the public, in moderation, should be allowed access to a once-in-a-lifetime event."
Oliveira told reporters Friday that the area remains dangerous and neighbors in the path of the flow are grieving and mourning the potential loss of their homes. So outsiders need to be both respectful and safe, Oliveira said, repeating a message he delivers daily.
Bousquet provided the Star-Advertiser with a selfie he took in front of the flow Monday night. He said he also escorted a CBS News crew at 3 a.m. Wednesday, in addition to other visits to the flow this week.
A representative for CBS did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
On Wednesday Bousquet said he wanted to gain "legal access" to the flow by getting permission from one resident.
The woman at first wanted $1,500 to give him access, Bousquet said, which he negotiated down to $1,000 before the woman "said she was afraid."
"I wanted to do something legally so I wasn’t trespassing," Bousquet said.