HONOLULU – Two employees of a man suspected of the killing of a Big Island police officer was arrested, but the shooter remained at large, authorities said Friday.
The arrests were made during a manhunt prompted by the killing of Officer Bronson Kaimana Kaliloa during a traffic stop Tuesday near Hilo, according to police.
The search continued for the suspect Justin Waiki, 33, whose last known address was in Las Vegas. The authorities say he has a criminal record on the Big Island.
“We hope that We see him today,” Hawaii County police spokesman Alan Richmond said. “We have a full-press, as you might imagine, to catch him.”
The U. S. Marshals Service, FBI and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives are offering a $10,000 reward for information leading to the capture of Waiki. The agencies assisting with the search, along with state sheriffs.
The two arrests were made after an undercover officer approached a suspicious pick-up truck with a man and a woman in late Thursday near Honaunau, opposite the island of Hilo.
The officer drew his weapon and ordered the two people out of the truck. Instead, they fled and the police gave chase.
No further details were immediately available.
Elisa Trapp, who saw the arrests, told the Honolulu Star-Advertiser that the woman and the man were handcuffed and separated on either side of the road, and the man seemed to fall “head to toe” in blood.
“And then the ambulance pulls into the middle of them, and there is police everywhere,” she told the newspaper.
The police and the public prosecutor on the Big Island have warned residents who are carriers of or an attempt to help Waiki could lead to a crime punishable with imprisonment.
Kaliloa, 46, was the first police officer to be fatally shot on the Big Island. He was married for 23 years and had three children. He was Officer of the Year” for his district in 2014.
Kaliloa’s cousin, Kawehi Haug sent a Facebook message Thursday to The Associated Press.
“He was strong and sweet and funny and smart and chivalrous and served his community every day as an honest and fair police officer whose conviction led him to always do the right thing,” she wrote.
They also said he was a loving husband and father.
Haug said Kaliloa and his wife adopted their three children, ages 3, 4 and 7, by the state foster care system.