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Police arrest suspected gunman, identify victim in fatal Big Isle shooting

Hawaii island police have arrested a suspect in the shooting incident Saturday afternoon that left one man dead and two others injured on Painted Church Road in South Kona.

Just before 3 p.m. Saturday, police responded to a call and confirmed one man had died at the scene. He has since been identified as Thomas Ballesteros Jr., 42, of no permanent address. An autopsy will be conducted this week to determine the exact cause of death.

Police determined that two other men were injured, including the suspect, who fled the scene on a motorcycle prior to their arrival. Both men have since been located and identified and are currently being treated for non-life threatening gunshot injuries.

At 6:15 p.m. Sunday, police arrested Brian Lee Smith, 49, of Honaunau, for one count of second-degree murder and one count of attempted second-degree murder. Additional charges are pending. Upon his release from the hospital, he is due for his initial court appearance.

Detectives continue their investigation and ask anyone with information to call Lt. Rio Amon-Wilkins at 326-4646 ext. 230.

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