By David Corrigan, Baron Sekiya, Daryl Lee, and Stephanie Salazar
HONOLII, Hawaii: Following up on a story we brought you yesterday: Police have more information surrounding the body found at the bottom of a ravine off Kaiwiki Road.
Hawaii247.com journalist Baron Sekiya captured this video of the Hawaii County Fire Department’s Chopper 1 assisting with Tuesday’s recovery effort.
Police say that shortly after 4 p.m., South Hilo patrol officers responded to the upper Kaiwiki Road area to investigate a report of an unattended Volkswagen convertible. Upon arrival, police discovered that the registered owner of the vehicle was an 84-year-old Kaiwiki man, who could not be accounted for. As of Wednesday evening, police have not identified the man.
Police found indications at the scene that the man might be injured. At the bottom of a nearby ravine, Fire department personnel located the body of an elderly Caucasian man with apparent injuries. He was taken to Hilo Medical Center, where he was officially pronounced dead.
Detectives from the Area I Criminal Investigations Section secured the scene overnight and returned Wednesday morning to conduct further investigation into this incident, which is currently classified as a coroner’s inquest. Detectives have not ruled out foul play and have ordered an autopsy to determine the exact cause of death and to confirm the man’s identity.
Police are asking that anyone with information about this case call Detective Grant Todd at 961-2385 or the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311.
In other police related news, just a few days after local law enforcement issued an alert about car break-ins in and around Honolii Beach Park… the popular surf spot gets hit again.
Hawaii County Police responded to Honolii after a report of yet another car break in, after warning the public about a rash of 10 vehicle break-ins and six thefts of tailgates in and around Hilo. Police say that in the tailgate thefts, the thieves have targeted Toyota Tacoma trucks.
Police say the car break-ins have taken place in Downtown Hilo, Honoliʻi and the Hilo High School track—usually during the late night and early morning hours. The primary method of entry is by breaking a window or reaching through a partially opened window to unlock a door. Victims of these crimes have included both visitors and local residents.
News videographer Daryl Lee interviewed Scott Yoell from Honokaa, who was Wednesday’s unlucky victim.
Police dusted for fingerprints and interviewed witnesses at the location of the recurring crimes.
Police remind the public that all vehicles left unattended should be locked and secured properly. Any items left inside should be concealed from view. If at all possible, don’t leave valuables inside at all.
And its not just car break-ins that have troubled Honolii in the past week. On Monday, an alleged stabbing sent one man to the hospital, and police made an arrest in connection with the incident.