HONOLULU (KHON2) — A burglary during the evening of Wednesday, April 14, turned into a police shooting in Nuuanu that left the male suspect dead.
The Honolulu Police Department (HPD) says an officer used his Taser, but it was ineffective on the suspect.
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HPD Chief Susan Ballard says three officers were injured in the scuffle, one of them is still in the hospital as of Thursday, April 15.
It started just after 8 p.m. Wednesday night. Three officers responded to the scene after a report of a burglary. Ballard says the suspect was sitting in his car when the first officer arrived, but the suspect then charged and punched the officer several times. The second officer tried to pull the suspect away.
“Officer 3 then arrived on scene deployed his Taser but it was ineffective. The suspect then charged at Officer 3 before running and charging at Officer 1 again,” said Ballard.
Ballard says the first officer then fired one shot before being tackled by the suspect, who then straddled the officer and started punching him again.
“Officer 2 then fired three rounds at the suspect and the suspect then fell to the ground,” said Ballard.
Ballard says the whole thing happened in less than a minute. The first officer, who is still in the hospital, has facial fractures and other injuries.The second and third officers injured their body, arms and legs, and were treated and released.
Ballard says the suspect is 29 years old and has no criminal record. Family has identified him as Lindani Myeni. Ballard says he walked into someone’s home uninvited, which is what prompted the call to police.
“Kind of odd behavior, he sat down he took off his shoes, was talking, trying to talk to the people. But they were very upset and trying to get him out, and he eventually walked out,” said Ballard.
The police officers’ union says this incident is another example of an increasing trend of violence against law enforcement.
“We’re turning into counselors with the different kinds of situations our officers are facing out there. There’s a lot of mental illness that we’re dealing with, drug use. It’s hard for us right now,” said SHOPO president Malcolm Lutu.
Ballard says the officers had body cams on and the videos are being reviewed.