Violent stabbing of a 14-year-old boy in Kalihi highlights need for youth outreach

Local News

HONOLULU (KHON2) — The stabbing of a 14-year-old boy on Thursday afternoon at Fern Community Park in Kalihi highlights the growing problem of violent crimes involving teens in the area.

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Kalihi-Palama Neighborhood Board member Jacob Aki said more needs to be done to get teens off the street.

A spokesperson for the Honolulu Police Department said that they are still investigating the crime. They said the victim was playing basketball around 3:50 p.m. when he was stabbed several times by a suspect roughly the same age.

Aki grew up in Kalihi and said crimes like this are happening more frequently in the area.

“Over the past couple of years, we’ve definitely seen an increase in the amount of violent crimes in our community,” said Aki.

According to HPD’s crime-mapping website, there were 18 assaults within a one-mile radius of Fern Community Park in the last two months. Five of those are classified as aggravated assaults like Thursday’s stabbing.

Aki said the board is hoping residents will keep an eye on their neighborhoods.

“Our board has also been trying to increase community policing. I think we do have a number of community policing groups, neighborhood security watches.”

According to Aki, the age of the boys involved is even more disturbing. In recent years, he’s noticed more victims and suspects were under the age of 18.

“I’ve seen it myself, kids fooling around or kids playing around with the wrong folks. So for me, it’s important we provide opportunities for our youth to get off the streets, to get into programs so they can better themselves and don’t find themselves going down the wrong path,” he said. “Our board has really been supportive of efforts to provide these type of community programs to get kids off the street, and put them on the right path before they become adults and begin to make bad choices.”

Aki said that providing island youth with positive resources needs to be a priority because he doesn’t see the situation getting any better on its own.

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