HILO, BIG ISLAND (HawaiiNewsNow) - Police have launched a murder investigation after the body of a Hilo man was found along the Bayfront Highway.
According to authorities, police received calls from people who heard possible gunshots near Mooheau Park at about 8:47 p.m. Saturday. Responding officers found a man with apparent gunshot wounds.
Police identified the victim as 32-year-old Faafetai Fiu. The suspect remains at large.
Officers closed the Bayfront Highway from Pauahi Street to Waianuenue Avenue while they investigated. The highway was reopened at around 10 a.m. Sunday.
"We have divers in the water who are conducting a search for a possible weapon," said police Lt. Greg Esteban Sunday when the highway was still closed. "We don't have any substantiated information about the weapon being in this location. However, we need to exclude that possibility as well."
Detectives later said they had recovered evidence, which will be sent to a forensics lab for analysis. Esteban said police had found shell casings at the scene, but did not identify what kind of weapon they came from because of the continuing investigation.
An autopsy will be conducted Wednesday morning to determine the exact cause of death, police said.
Court records show that Fiu had his own run-ins with the law on the Big Island. In September, Fiu was found guilty of terroristic threatening and promoting a dangerous drug . He also was convicted of harassment in 2010, driving under the influence in 2009, and criminal contempt of court in 2008.
Investigators also were reviewing surveillance videos from various businesses along Kamehameha Avenue. Police also are looking for more witnesses, including fishermen who frequent the Bayfront area, which is a popular area for shoreline fishing. Motorists or pedestrians who may have seen a confrontation near a light-colored vehicle on the makai shoulder of the highway are also being asked to come forward.
Anyone with information or who may have witnessed the shooting are asked to contact Detective Robert Almeida at 961-2386 or firstname.lastname@example.org or Detective Norbert Serrao and 961-2383 or email@example.com. Tipsters who want to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo or 329-8181 in Kona.