New details on Ka`u shootout involving suspected cop killer
Posted July 22, 2018 12:15 p.m. EDT
Hawaii — New details on Saturday about the violent end to the manhunt for an accused cop killer. Alleged gunman and suspect, 33-year-old Justin Waiki, opened fire on another officer on Friday, before being shot and killed by police. Waiki was on the run for three days before the search for him came to an end on Friday afternoon.
Police say officers had stopped an Toyota 4Runner - registered to the parents of the passenger Krystle Ferreira- at a South Point checkpoint in the Kau district. When they went to check inside the vehicle, Waiki came out from under a blanket and opened fire, shooting a police officer in the chest and arm. Police say Waiki used a .38 revolver that was stolen from a home in March.
Other officers fired back, killing Waiki. A woman with Waiki was shot and injured during the exchange and taken to the Hilo Medical Center. Police arrested three other people at the scene; they are suspected of hindering prosecution.
Some residents say while they're relieved it's over, they're still in shock over what took place here. Mountain View resident Erin Workman says, "It was really to believe, but once the news started reporting it and the chief came on, it was this huge sigh of relief. Everybody knew they were going to sleep better that night. His wife and family are going to have closure."
Mountain View resident Kevin Hegent adds, "It's done and over with, and we can at least rely on and count on the police force and the community on coming together in situations like this."
The Special Response Team sergeant wounded is a 12 year veteran in the department. Hawaii Police Department says he is "recovering nicely" and in stable condition at Hilo Medical Center.
Police say the 35-year-old woman shot in the vehicle at the scene is still being treated at Hilo Medical Center for her injuries. She has a gunshot wound to the leg area and a broken femur.
Hawaii Police Department says the the Area II Criminal Investigation Section is still investigating the South Point Road shooting. "We are continuing to investigate any leads relative to any individuals who may have assisted Waiki, to include transporting him as well as providing him a place to stay while he was wanted. The three individuals arrested for Hindering Prosecution in the first degree have not been charged yet. That offense is a class C felony punishable up to five years in jail," it says in a press release.
The department also asks anyone with information about this case, or about anyone assisting Waiki during this period to call Detective Jerome Manuel of the Criminal Investigation Section at (808) 326-4646 ext. 262, or at Jerome.Manuel@hawaiicounty.gov.
Meanwhile, the community continues to mourn the death of Officer Bronson Kaliloa. A roadside memorial was erected where the officer was killed in Mountain View, and flowers sit outside the Hawaii Police Department station in Hilo. Kaliloa is survived by his wife and three children.