HONOLULU (KHON2) — A 17-year-old boy is in the hospital after being shot Monday night at Ala Wai Park.
Police are still looking for the suspect and have opened an attempted murder investigation.
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The victim’s uncle, who asked only to be identified as Herbert, said he’s still in disbelief.
“This is where they normally hang out, and I felt like they should be safe,” he explained.
Herbert found out his nephew was shot when his son called him around 10:15 p.m.
“He gave me a call,” he recalled. “I could hear in the background. It sounded like he was panicking.”
Herbert said he and his nephew’s guardian, who asked not to be identified, rushed down to the park.
The guardian said she spent the night in the hospital with the victim, and he told her what happened.
She said the victim, his cousin and several of his friends had just finished playing basketball. The boys all walked over to the dug outs to hang out for a little while before heading home.
“He said the lights had gone out,” the guardian said. “They were getting ready to leave the dug out. When they stood up, a group of boys, they were outside of the dug out on the other side of the fence, and they were walking past them.”
The victim told her the suspects said something but he couldn’t recall what it was.
“Right after that he heard two, three gun shots,” said the guardian. “That last gun shot is what hit his right thigh and after that he couldn’t feel his leg.”
Another witness, who also asked to remain anonymous, said she heard the gun shots but thought they were fireworks. Shortly after she said she saw a car race out of the parking lot.
The victim’s guardian said the bullet fractured his femur. He went into surgery Tuesday morning and is recovering in the hospital.
“He’s 17,” the guardian explained. “He is supposed to be going into his senior year. This is going to mess up a lot of things he had planned. He’s not going to be able to play basketball most likely.”
She said the incident is unnerving because the victim claims it was a random attack. It happened somewhere they go every day.
“He had never seen those boys before. He didn’t have any interaction with them,” she said. “This is a park, this is where families should be able to come and have recreational activities and feel safe, but now they can’t.”
The victim’s guardian had this message for the suspect. “Just come forward and take responsibility for what you did. I think if you have the nerve to pull out a gun like that on a minor, you should come forward and except the consequences like an adult.”
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The investigation is ongoing.