HONOLULU (KHON2) — Two early morning stabbings in Waikiki Tuesday left one man dead and another in critical condition.
A third is in custody for attempted murder and police are looking for more suspects.
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Emergency officials said the first happened shortly before 1 a.m. near what’s called ‘The Wall’ in Waikiki.
About a half hour later and 20 yards down the street — another stabbing. This one left a 21-year-old man in critical condition.
Residents said that since restrictions have loosened up the atmosphere in Waikiki changed.
They said it’s dangerous and there needs to be more of a police presence to prevent these types of things from happening.
George Owens said he was sleeping on a grassy mound on Kalakaua Avenue near Ohua Street when he heard a commotion several yards away.
“I saw two men probably in their mid to late 20s fighting next to the rock wall,” Owens said. “It was a short fight and one of them went down.”
Initially, officials said the victim was a 22-year-old man from Las Vegas. However, on June 2, the medical examiner’s office confirmed that the victim was from Pleasanton, California. Sources said he was stabbed twice, once in the chest and in the ribs. The suspect is still at large.
There were a number of witnesses. Police released a video and are asking for help identifying them.
Moments later, another stabbing just yards away.
Owens said the police were still busy tending to the first stabbing and when they all jumped up and ran the opposite direction toward Diamond Head, to the second incident.
The 21-year-old man in that stabbing was taken to the hospital in critical condition. Sources said he was stabbed in the throat.
Police arrested 29-year-old Otis Alexander for attempted murder. According to sources, he was picked up just two blocks away and a knife was found in bushes nearby.
It is unclear whether the two stabbings were related.
David Carvalho has worked in Waikiki for decades. He said the atmosphere in Waikiki changed since the pandemic.
“I think the streets are very unsafe right now. People are in this kind of attack mode now days,” he explained.
Detectives were on scene and spoke to him Tuesday afternoon.
“Speaking to them, they know its crazy,” Carvalho said.
It’s the last thing Hawaii needs just as tourism is finally starting to pick up according to Sen. Sharon Moriwaki, who represents the Waikiki area.
“We cannot keep going on like this and, and having our residents hurt by it and visitors hurt by it,” she said.
Honolulu City Council Chair Tommy Waters was shocked that the stabbings occurred so close to the police substation.
“That’s pretty brazen, and, understandably, residents are concerned,” Waters said. “When you have this many visitors come, it’s gonna attract that that crime element. And patrolling police officers, I’ve said that from day one, patrolling police officers is the best deterrent to crime.”
A Honolulu Police Department spokesperson said officers will be working various shifts in uniformed and plainclothes capacities.