Two Honolulu police officers fatally shot a man who allegedly tried to run them down in a Jeep as they attempted to serve an arrest warrant in the Windward Oahu neighborhood of Ahuimanu this afternoon.
Honolulu police Chief Susan Ballard said the 45-year-old man with 48 convictions — including 12 felonies ranging from kidnapping to drug and firearms offenses — ignored the officers’ warnings to exit the vehicle, then drove toward them.
“Fearing for their lives,” she said, the officers fired four to six shots at the vehicle.
The Jeep crashed into two parked cars, and the officers removed the injured man from the vehicle and started to perform cardio-pulmonary resuscitation on him, she said.
He was taken in critical condition to the Queen’s Medical Center where he was pronounced dead.
One of the officers suffered a minor hand injury, Ballard said.
The officers have 20 and 8 years of experience with HPD, respectively, and have been placed on three-day administrative leave as is standard HPD practice.
Ballard said the officers are members of the Crime Reduction Unit with the Kaneohe District (District 4) and properly identified themselves when they first approached the man.
She said when he was initially approached, the suspect fled on foot, entered the Jeep, locked the doors and refused to get out of the vehicle.
He turned on the vehicle, revved the engine and quickly reversed the Jeep “forcing the officers to jump out of the way. The suspect then accelerated towards the officers at a high rate of speed, leaving skid marks in the parking lot,” Ballard said.
The suspect’s vehicle struck two parked cars, pushing them over the curb onto a grassy area, the chief said.
Police classified the case against the 45-year-old as an attempted murder.
The incident occurred at about 11:30 a.m. at 47-330 Ahuimanu Road, the location of Hookipa Kahaluu, a state public housing project.
The CRU officers were not equipped with body-worn cameras.
HPD’s District 4 and the Traffic Division officers are not equipped with the technology, but are scheduled to get them in early 2021, Ballard said.
CRU officers are plainclothes officers, only armed with handguns, and do not have any less-than-lethal weapons, as are patrol officers
The officers were wearing vests clearly marked “police,” and had police badges hanging around their necks, the chief said.
Ballard said CRU units are often called on to serve high-risk warrants such as high-bail or no-bail warrants. In this case the suspect was being served a “retake” warrant for his arrest.
The Honolulu Medical Examiner’s Office confirmed the death earlier today.