Big Island Police Launch New Kuleana Tip Hotline

The Hawaiʻi Police Department has launched a new tool the community can use to help keep our island safe. It’s called the “Kuleana Hotline.”

The Kuleana Hotline is not a substitute for 9-1-1 calls. In an emergency, always call 9-1-1.

The Kuleana Hotline is designed to prevent tragic events in public places, including schools, restaurants and other locations where members of our community gather.

Unlike Crime Stoppers, to which citizens may report information about a specific crime, the Kuleana Hotline is an avenue for reporting something that may not be criminal yet but has the potential to turn disastrous if not prevented.

Many tragedies committed by individuals or organized groups have been preceded by warning signs. We as a community are responsible for notifying the police if we see or hear anything that has the potential to turn into a malicious act.

For example:

  • If you read a post on a social networking site about a person interested in purchasing a firearm and the person signals intent to cause harm with that weapon, call the Kuleana Hotline.
  • If you witness suspicious activity around public buildings, utility companies or bridges, call the Kuleana Hotline.
  • If you see something or someone’s behavior that may seem innocuous but gives you a “funny feeling” in your stomach that something is “just not right,” call the Kuleana Hotline.

Your tip could help authorities intervene before those warning signs develop into a crime or tragedy.

“Kuleana” is the Hawaiian word for “responsibility.” The significance of the hotline’s name is that we are all neighbors living on this island together, and we are all responsible for preventing acts of terror or mass injury.

The number for the Kuleana Hotline is 961-2219. It is not manned around the clock but it allows for callers to provide information by leaving voice mail messages.

Together, we can protect our community from destructive acts.

Police Officer Saves Person from Drowning… Becomes Officer of the Year

Officer Carrie Akina was named the Big Island’s “Officer of the Year” by the Hawaiʻi State Law Enforcement Officials Association at a banquet at the Hāpuna Beach Prince Hotel on September 23.

Akina received the honor for risking her own personal safety and welfare to rescue a swimmer in distress last November.

While conducting a narcotics investigation at Honl’s Beach on November 19, 2010, Akina observed a struggling swimmer. She immediately notified dispatch and requested Fire Rescue. She then got her personal boogie board out of the trunk of her car and entered the rough surf to rescue the 37-year-old New York man. While on her way to his side, she saw him submerged in the water for short periods of time. She was able to reach him quickly and assist him back to shore.

Patrol officers at the scene concurred that if Officer Akina had not reacted as swiftly and bravely as she did, the victim would have drowned.

Earlier this year, Akina received a Bronze Medal of Merit for her act of bravery. Chief Harry Kubojiri said Akina showed “true character” and demonstrated “great personal courage.

Big Island “Detectives Have Uncovered an Unscrupulous and Potentially Dangerous Online Effort by an Organization that Lures Unsuspecting Women to Oahu…”

Media Release:

Big Island police are cautioning the public about responding to advertisements seeking prospective models. While there obviously are reputable modeling agencies making legitimate recruitments, Hilo detectives have uncovered an unscrupulous and potentially dangerous online effort by an organization that lures unsuspecting women to Oahu under the pretense of offering them careers in modeling while actually having other intentions.

Recently, two young local women were coaxed to Oahu with the promise of a lucrative modeling contract. After a few days of being photographed around the island of Oahu, the women learned that the photographer and “modeling agent” intended to take them out of the state, possibly out of the country. Circumstances described by one of the potential victims who was able to get away and fly back to the Big Island suggested that the pair’s true intention was to traffic the young ladies into a life of prostitution.

Honolulu Police Department personnel were immediately notified and were able to intercept the second female along with the two suspects just as they were checking out of their hotel. The second potential victim was provided secure escort to the Honolulu airport, where she safely boarded a flight back to the Big Island.

This matter is being looked into by investigators with the Honolulu Police Department.

As with many online solicitations, members of the public are urged to be wary of potential threats to their safety and financial well being. While the internet is a tremendous resource and valuable tool, law-abiding citizens aren’t the only ones who use it. The criminal element in our society regularly uses the internet to feed their greed and prey upon unsuspecting innocent people.

Be wise when conducting business over the internet. Be particularly careful if you make personal contact with individuals met online, although that practice is ill-advised.