HONOLULU (KHON2) — A Navy sailor is dead from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound after a nearly 11-hour lockdown and barricade last night at Kahala Hotel & Resort.
The lockdown trapped hundreds of guests and local residents dining on property who were forced to take shelter inside of a ballroom and a lobby. Nobody else was injured in the standoff.
Honolulu Police say it began at around 5:40 p.m. on Saturday, April 10.
A man barricaded himself in his hotel room on the 4th floor of the resort and fired five shots.
“The report of shots fired occurred and security had gone to the hotel room to investigate,” HPD Capt. Brian Lynch said. “While they were there, apparently the suspect shot through the door and thankfully the security guard wasn’t standing in front of the door.”
Police and emergency crews descended upon the usually quiet Kahala area, rounding up guests and patrons to get to safety.
“Coming from the parking lot to the lobby, an officer yelling at me ‘get in the lobby, get in the lobby,'” patron Corey Funai said.
Tama Fukuyama was eating dinner when she was forced to evacuate to a lockdown in the lobby.
“We just saw three armed officers kind of walk in and the manager was like ‘everyone out’ and it was kind of chaos from there. Everyone went in different directions,” Fukuyama said.
They waited in the lobby, others in the ballroom, for over 6 hours. Hotel staff were widely praised for handing out snacks, water, coffee, blankets and pillows.
“I’m thankful that my family knew that I was safe we were all taken care of by the staff. They were wonderful,” Tammy Lam said.
Information to those in lockdown was limited, and with a recent wave of mass shootings on the U.S. mainland, there was a lot of time to think about the situation.
“You never think things like that are gonna happen here, but we need to be realistic. It could happen anywhere,” Fukuyama said.
At about 12:30 a.m., HPD let people who were locked down leave the area.
“After the whole six hours plus they said ‘we’re going take out non-guests through the back way’ so we went downstairs through the lobby through the restaurant out on the beach with an officer (in) groups of 10,” Funai said.
HPD says the SWAT team went into the man’s room around 3:30 a.m., where they found him dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. The Navy has not released the identity of the sailor, but released this statement:
A Sailor assigned to the Pacific Submarine Force is deceased. We are deeply saddened by the loss of a shipmate. Our thoughts and condolences go out to the Sailor’s family and friends. Each member of our Navy team is important; this is a tragic loss to our Force and Navy Family. We live and work here, and we appreciate the support of law enforcement and the community.US NAVY COMMANDER CINDY FIELDS
SPOKESPERSON FOR PACIFIC SUBMARINE FORCE
Attempted murder and reckless endangering cases have been opened.