EXCLUSIVE: HPD cop fired in Las Vegas pot incident reinstated - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

EXCLUSIVE: HPD officer fired in Las Vegas pot incident reinstated

Shayne Souza and Kevin Fujioka Shayne Souza and Kevin Fujioka
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

One of two Honolulu police officers fired after being convicted of marijuana-related charges in Las Vegas in 2009 has been reinstated to HPD, Hawaii News Now has learned.

In August 2009, the two police officers in Las Vegas for a softball tournament were arrested in Desert Breeze Park, a few miles away from the Vegas strip. 

Shayne Souza and Kevin Fujioka were charged with marijuana possession and other violations. 

Vegas police said when they approached the men's van that smelled of marijuana, they drove away and then ran away on foot. 

Police chased them down and detectives said Souza resisted arrest and had to be pepper sprayed.   

In the spring of 2010, Fujioka was found guilty of misdemeanor driving under the influence and marijuana charges. Souza pleaded guilty to obstructing a police officer. 

HPD fired them both.   

The police union SHOPO appealed Souza's termination to an arbitrator who ruled in favor of HPD, so Souza did not get his job back.  He had been fired once before by HPD and had already been reinstated once. 

But police union officials said Fujioka successfully appealed his firing to a different arbitrator, who reinstated him. 

So Fujioka went back to work. He's now assigned to the training division at the police academy in Waipahu, an HPD spokeswoman said.    

"What people don't see is the circumstances that led up to the termination and also how the investigation was conducted," said Tenari Maafala, who heads the statewide police officers' union. 

"If the investigation obviously is subjective, there are a lot of loopholes there.  And it becomes a window, an opportunity for SHOPO to expose that," Maafala said. 

Maafala said in the cases of Fujioka and Souza, they each had different arbitrators. And Maafala said some arbitrators are tougher on police officers and hold them to a higher standard in termination cases.  So just like at the gambling tables in Las Vegas, whether officers get their jobs back can come down to a bit of luck.


Copyright 2013 Hawaii News Now.  All rights reserved.

  • Hawaii News Now headlinesNewsMore>>

  • Anthony Weiner sentenced to 21 months in sexting case

    Anthony Weiner sentenced to 21 months in sexting case

    Monday, September 25 2017 12:37 AM EDT2017-09-25 04:37:20 GMT
    Monday, September 25 2017 1:12 PM EDT2017-09-25 17:12:55 GMT

    Prosecutors say Weiner broke the law by having illicit contact with a 15-year-old girl, including asking her to "sexually perform" for him in conversations on Skype and Snapchat.

    More >>

    Prosecutors say Weiner broke the law by having illicit contact with a 15-year-old girl, including asking her to "sexually perform" for him in conversations on Skype and Snapchat.

    More >>
  • Facebook to release Russia ads, beef up election 'integrity'

    Facebook to release Russia ads, beef up election 'integrity'

    Thursday, September 21 2017 3:55 PM EDT2017-09-21 19:55:51 GMT
    Monday, September 25 2017 1:12 PM EDT2017-09-25 17:12:30 GMT

    Facebook says it will release the Russia-backed, potentially illegal election ads that ran on its platform to congressional investigators.

    More >>

    Facebook says it will release the Russia-backed, potentially illegal election ads that ran on its platform to congressional investigators.

    More >>
  • Trump hangs on to feud with NFL, revives issue with tweets

    Trump hangs on to feud with NFL, revives issue with tweets

    Monday, September 25 2017 5:17 AM EDT2017-09-25 09:17:32 GMT
    Monday, September 25 2017 1:11 PM EDT2017-09-25 17:11:34 GMT
    President Donald Trump's attacks on activist athletes kicked off his favorite kind of drama _ personal, aggressive, culturally volatile and largely of his own making.More >>
    President Donald Trump's attacks on activist athletes kicked off his favorite kind of drama _ personal, aggressive, culturally volatile and largely of his own making.More >>
Powered by Frankly