Kahaluu prepares for new fight against meth - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Kahaluu prepares for new fight against meth

John Cambra John Cambra
Sheri & Isaiah Aipia Sheri & Isaiah Aipia
Arthur Machado Arthur Machado
Sgt. Duane Samson Sgt. Duane Samson

By Mari-Ela David - bio | email

KAHALUU (Hawaii News Now) - A killer is making a comeback. For six years, a small Windward Oahu town has been fighting crystal meth and winning.

But the scourge is flaring-up again.

Kahaluu residents say drug dealers are infecting their neighborhoods like a virus.

At Kahaluu Regional Park is where residents say drug dealers often times do business, even when kids are around. In fact, one football coach says, during practice at the park, he's had to escort his players inside the bathroom at times.

"We've got adults in there taking a bath and hanging out around there and it's bad for our kids," said John Cambra, Pop Warner Junior Pee Wee Football Coach.

"They're young. My concern is that, his football team, they're 8, 9, 10-year-old's, and that's something they shouldn't be exposed to," said Sheri Aipia, a parent of one of the football players.

"I have seen cars going back and forth out of the back road," said Aipia's son, Isaiah.

It's not just at the park. Another problem spot - the Hygienic Store.

On Wednesday night at the KEY Project Facility, residents held a town hall meeting to address Kahaluu's growing reputation as an easy place to buy drugs.

"You don't have to go to Waianae, you don't have to do it at Kuhio Terrace, go to Kahuluu by the banyan tree and buy anything you want - and that bothered me," said Kahaluu Neighborhood Board Member, Arthur Machado.

Honolulu Police say the reason for the meth flare-up - a neighborhood watch that stopped after the community succeeded in driving drugs out.

"It was a moblie patrol, it was community members getting out and driving around in the neighborhoods, patrolling the schools around this neighborhood," said Sgt. Duane Samson of the Honolulu Police Department.

Residents plan on jumpstarting those patrols again, saying they're disturbed by the youth involved with drugs.

"I've seen kids on bikes as runners who come up to the car and they would pass on baggies and just go out into the neighborhood," said Machado.

"How young?"

"10 years old, 12 years old - young," said Machado.

As part of a community effort to take back their neighborhood, on November 11, residents will clear out overgrown brush at Kahaluu Regional Park, and other places where they believe drug dealers hang out.

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