Honolulu mayor, police chief step up crime fighting efforts in Chinatown - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Honolulu mayor, police chief step up crime fighting efforts in Chinatown

Victor Lim Victor Lim
Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann
Honolulu Police Chief Boisse Correa Honolulu Police Chief Boisse Correa

By Leland Kim - bio | email

CHINATOWN (KHNL) -  The City and County of Honolulu steps up efforts to fight crime in Chinatown, after recent gang-related violence shocked the community. It's a joint effort among the mayor, the police chief, the city council and community members.

The most visible way they're doing this is increasing police presence.  The Honolulu Police Department has tripled the number of officers patrolling and that has folks here feeling like Chinatown is going back to normal.

A popular Chinese proverb says, "if i am dreaming let me never awake, if i am awake, let me never sleep."

Folks in Chinatown have been sleeplessly awake after recent gang activity shook up this community. Several weeks ago a man was shot and killed on Puahi Street, and last week, another person was stabbed on River Street.

"People that work and utilize the area, safety will always be a primary concern for everyone," said Victor Lim, a longtime Chinatown business owner.

That's why Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann says enough is enough.  He has this message for criminals:

"You're on alert and we're watching," he said. "And we'll come after you if you bring illegal activity in this area.  We will not tolerate that. Zero tolerance for illegal activity taking place in Chinatown or any place on Oahu."

To fight crime, the city has tripled the number of officers patrolling the area.

"You walk the streets at night, you'll see officers," said Honolulu Police Chief Boisse Correa. "You walk the streets in the morning, evening, you name it.  There'll be officers down here."

Suspected San Francisco gang members dealing crack cocaine are blamed for the recent spike in Chinatown violence.

"There's a lot of pressure on the gangs and right now they're basically going underground because the heat is on Chinatown and throughout the island," said Correa.

Business owners are hoping criminals won't be able to take the heat, and get out of Chinatown.

"Anything that will bring more police presence and safety into the Chinatown area is a big welcome by the whole community," said Lim.

And the community is united to take back their neighborhood, so they can live their dream while awake, and sleep soundly at night.

The city also started a hotline specific to Chinatown, so people can call to talk about problems or concerns.  The city is also looking to clean up Chinatown literally, by putting together a "Clean Team" to address trash on sidewalks and in the street.

For more information, click the link on this page.

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