(BIVN) – A recently retired lieutenant from the Hawaiʻi County Police Department is taking action, and has filed a complaint in regards to the ongoing police activity around Mauna Kea.
Juergen Canda is speaking out about the stepped up traffic enforcement efforts on Daniel K. Inouye Highway, conducted by “police assigned to be in place for the [Thirty Meter Telescope] protestor blockade and encampment on Mauna Kea access road”, as stated by the department.
Canda filed a complaint with the Hawaiʻi County Police Commission this week. He was recorded by Andre Perez of HULI, the Hawaiʻi Unity and Liberation Institute, one of the groups active in the Ku Kiaʻi Mauna movement. The video was posted to Facebook.
As of November 14, the Hawaiʻi Police Department says the combined total of its 13-week long Daniel K. Inouye Highway enhanced traffic enforcement effort stands at 6,585 citations issued and 62 persons arrested for 121 offenses. “The effort will continue for the duration of the ongoing protest situation to promote the safety of motorist and pedestrians alike,” police wrote.
This is what Canda wrote in his complaint:
From 08-15-19 to present, the Hawaii Police Department has been conducting a tactical military style operation, under the pretext of traffic enforcement (for safety reasons), in the area surrounding the Hwy 200 & Mauna Kea Access Rd. junction, where native Hawaiian citizens are engaged in a peaceful civil protest, upon Hawaiian Homelands, by deliberately employing a stratagem that creates a punitive area surrounding the protest area that deters or discourages citizens from participating in, supporting, or visiting the site of the protest. The enforcement efforts are in reality and in consequences, a method of sanctioning citizens through selective and targeted enforcement methods and strategies that have had an intentionally suppressive and chilling effect on the free exercise of state and federal constitutionally protected rights, with the goal of debilitating this civil movement. It has also subjected the general population and visitors to this island to a threatening and intimidating police presence designed to project a militarized atmosphere with personnel patrolling and conducting incessant “roadblocks” in military style combat uniforms. This operation that the Police Chief and his subordinate commanders have ordered, authorized, and sanctioned, is in violation of federal laws 34U.S.C. § 12601 and 42 U.S.C. § 2000d et seq. and 34 U.S.C. § 10228, and has now become institutionalized police misconduct. These are (racially) discriminatory harassment tactics involving targeting and profiling of native Hawaiians and other citizens. It is also in violation of the County Charter which states that law enforcement “shall be based on due regard for the constitutional rights of all persons and promote the highest possible degree of mutual respect between law enforcement officers and the people of the county”. These actions have brought the department into disrepute, in violation of HPD General Order 300, Standards of Conduct, and has disgraced the institution’s mission statement of “being committed to Preserving the Spirit of Aloha”.