comscore Big Island manhunt continues for shooting suspect who has eluded police gunfire several times | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
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Big Island manhunt continues for shooting suspect who has eluded police gunfire several times

  • HAWAII COUNTY POLICE DEPARTMENT

    Walter Gomes III

Hawaii County police continue their islandwide manhunt today for shooting suspect Walter Gomes III, of Kona, who has eluded authorities despite being shot at several times by officers on Thursday.

Gomes was last seen fleeing on foot into dense brush in Hawai after abandoning his white 2003 Cadillac Escalade. He is considered armed and dangerous and police warn the public not to approach him. Instead, they should call police at 935-3311 and report his location.

On Wednesday, about 7:07 p.m., patrol officers responded to the Kona Community Hospital where a woman had been taken in a private vehicle for a single, non-life threatening gunshot wound, police said. She was in serious condition.

Officers then began looking for a suspect, identified as Gomes, 41.

At around 2:05 a.m., Kona patrol officers found Gomes and his vehicle near Maiau Street in Kona. Police said Gomes refused to comply with the officer’s verbal commands and drove his vehicle toward police, striking a police vehicle.

Three officers fired their weapons but Gomes was able to flee the area, police said.

Following community tips and other leads, police said, officers in North Kohala District about mid-day Thursday spotted the suspect in his vehicle and he again refused to surrender. A police pursuit ensued leading to the closure of roads and evacuation of residents in Hawi.

Several officers fired rounds into the suspect’s vehicle at two locations in Hawi, police said. Gomes escaped after he broad-sided a police vehicle and fled on foot into a dense brush area.

As of this morning, he has not been found and police said they continue to follow-up on leads.

The Hawaii County Police Department’s Area II Criminal Investigation Section and the Office of Professional Standards are conducting investigations into the police shootings, which is standard procedure.

Gomes was last seen wearing a blue hoodie and camouflage cargo shorts, police said. He is about 5-feet-11-inches, 182 pounds with brown eyes and buzzed brown hair, a light mustache, and unshaved face.

Police advise the public to not contact Gomes and to report any sighting to the department’s non-emergency number, 935-3311, or to contact Lt. Roylen Valera at (808) 326-4646 ext. 230, or at roylen.valera@hawaiicounty.gov.

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