HONOLULU (KHON2) — More information about a Kauai murder suspect’s lengthy criminal history, and how he managed to evade police for 9 days has come to light.
Kauai Police consider murder suspect Chris Santos a seasoned criminal, they said he has knowledge on how to exhaust the department’s resources, which is why it took 9 days for over 100 law enforcement personnel from near and far to capture him.
“Mr. Santos apparently, as we received reports form the community very frequently didn’t stay in any one location for very long,” said Kaui Police Chief Todd Raybuck.
“Santos erratic behavior combined with frequently changing locations, phones and vehicles as Chief Raybuck mentioned added to the complexity of this case,” said Steven Merrill, FBI Honolulu Special Agent in charge of the case.
Law enforcement went into this manhunt with Santo’s extensive criminal record that dates back to 1994 in mind.
According to Kauai Police Santos was recently released from federal custody for a 2007 case.
Police said, during an attempted arrest Santos dragged an officer with a vehicle hit another officer and drove toward a third officer.
Kauai Police added he was on the run for three months during that time.
“At one point as he was alluding capture at that time period, Mr. Santos yelled at the direction of the officers as he fled you’ll have to shoot me to take me into custody,” said Chief Raybuck.
Taking no risks Kauai Police called on the FBI and U.S. Marshals for assistance.
“A team of highly trained tactical agents from across the country who stand at the ready to rapidly respond were activated and deployed from Kauai,” added Special Agent Merill.
The 9 day manhunt coming to an end Sunday night.
Officers found themselves in a similar situation compared to past run-ins with Santos.
That’s when police said, officers saw Santos driving a stolen vehicle near Kekaha Beach Park when police said he drove erratically towards officers.
KPD said an officer involved shooting unfolded.
“At one point, one of the tactical team members had to take an evasive measure to make sure Mr. Santos didn’t engage with their vehicle,” continued Chief Raybuck.
At last minute the jeep veered off the side of the road and struck a light pole. It was at this time members of the U.S. Marshals tactical team exited the vehicle and Mr. Santos was taken into custody.
Chief Raybuck said two rifles were found outside of the vehicle and a woman was also in the vehicle, but has been released as the investigation is ongoing.
After over a week of anxiety, the community now feeling a sense of closure. Santos is charged with the fatal shooting of Kith Silva-Lacro known as Nalu on Kahili Mountain Road.
It’s where a memorial is growing for the 28-year-old.
Meanwhile, Kauai Police said their work is not done, and they have a warning for anyone who helped Santos with communication, transportation and money during his run from law enforcement.
“We intend to hold each of you accountable for your actions,” said Chief Raybuck.
Again the murder case and officer involved shooting remains under investigation. Police said, Santos remains in the hospital and is expected to be released into custody in the next three to four days.
If you have information on this case, you’re asked to call Kauai Police.