HONOLULU (KHON2) — One man is in custody after a series of crimes on the Windward side of Oahu. It started with a stolen car from an auto repair shop.
Steve Yamada, owner of Windward Auto Repair, still can’t believe he was a victim of a bizarre crime spree Thursday morning.
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“I’ve been in Kaneohe a long time, been in business a long time, never had something like this happen,” Yamada said.
It started just after 8 a.m. when a 49-year-old male allegedly stole one of the cars at Yamada’s shop.
Yamada said he was running an errand when his employee called him looking for a set of keys.
“He asked me, ‘Where’s the key for the Mustang?’ I said, ‘It’s on my desk.’ He said, ‘No, it’s not on your desk.’ I said, ‘No, it’s on my desk. I know it’s on my desk,'” Yamada explained.
When he got back to the shop a few minutes later, the car was gone along with four other sets of car keys.
Yamada said he initially couldn’t figure out why so many keys were missing.
“And then it kind of dawned on us that he just walked into the office, grabbed the whole set of keys, and then he walked outside and then with the fobs, he was just trying to see which car he could take,” said Yamada.
That’s when Yamada said he called the police.
About an hour later, a man showed up at the Hygienic store less than four miles away driving the red Mustang.
According to a witness, who asked not to be identified, the suspect walked into the store, pulled out what the witness believed was a gun and took multiple items before he took off.
Shortly after that, the suspect was spotted at Windward Mall.
“One of my customers was around the mall and says, ‘Hey, why was there so much cops there? And he knew the car was stolen so he came and says, ‘Steve’ and said, ‘I think looks like a Mustang at the mall,'” Yamada said.
Schools in the area were put on lockdown since the suspect was believed to be armed.
Police records show a suspect was arrested along Kahuhipa Street, a short distance from the mall, for robbery, resisting arrest and car theft. The suspect remains in custody pending investigation.
Yamada said all of the car keys and the mustang were recovered undamaged.
Yamada is grateful no one was hurt.
“I’m old school,” Yamada explained. “I’m kind of trustworthy of people, but mentality and times got to change — everybody have to be vigilant.”
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Yamada said he, and neighboring businesses, are all beefing up security to prevent anything like this from happening in the future.