Big Island Police Arrest Volcano Man After Bizarre Incident Involving Military Gas Canister

Big Island police have charged a 49-year-old Volcano man with several firearms-related offenses stemming from an incident in Puna on Sunday night (August 19).

Keith Kapena Hulihee

Keith Kapena Hulihee was initially arrested when police responded to his home in Mauna Loa Estates after receiving reports of shots being fired in the area. Police contacted Hulihee, who allegedly informed police that he had an explosive device in his possession and wanted to turn it over to police. Officers located an item that they believed to be an explosive device on Hulihee’s property and subsequently evacuated nearby residents.

Hulihee was taken into custody and held at the Hilo police cellblock while detectives from the Area I Criminal Investigations Section continued the investigation.

No one was threatened with the device and no one was injured during the incident.

Military explosive ordnance disposal personnel from the U.S. Marines, who are conducting training exercises at the Pohakuloa Training Area, responded to the scene. They determined that the item was a military gas canister that did not pose any danger.

Detectives did not find any explosive devices on the property during the execution of a search warrant but did recover ammunition and drugs.

Although Hulihee was released without charges for his initial arrest, he was arrested again as the result of the new information.

At 8 p.m. Monday, after conferring with prosecutors, detectives from the Area I Criminal Investigations Section charged Hulihee with four counts of ownership/possession prohibited (for being a convicted felon in possession of ammunition), one count of third-degree promotion of a dangerous drug and one count of drug paraphernalia. His bail was set at $120,000. He remained in the police cellblock pending his initial court appearance scheduled for Tuesday afternoon (August 21).

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