HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The September 8 video that was sent to the media shows Honolulu Police Sergeant Darren Cachola repeatedly hitting and chasing his girlfriend through a Waipahu restaurant. It is less than 30 seconds long, but police sources say, it's what happens in the minutes before that clip that's complicating the investigation.
"People think they can send us an edited copy of a video and expect us to go and arrest people, that's unacceptable," Honolulu Police Chief Louis Kealoha said at a press conference Thursday.
Exclusive video that Hawaii News Now obtained last week shows Cachola and his girlfriend started fighting more than 30 minutes earlier. The video is from outside the restaurant where the woman works. It shows the woman kicking, hitting and then jumping on Cachola's back after he takes her phone.
Inside the restaurant, sources say it was more of the same, with the two actually fighting each other. The whole tape is several minutes long.
"If you say to somebody, let's take it outside and fight and you both agree to it, that's a mutual affray," says Eric Seitz, a defense attorney who is not involved in this case.
Seitz says domestic violence cases are very difficult for police and prosecutors, especially when the victim is not cooperative.
In this case, the woman showed me days later, that she did not have injuries and said she's a boxer. She also described the events of that night as "horseplay".
Legal experts have said it's unlikely Cachola will be charged with anything more than misdemeanor assault.
But there will likely be internal punishment and not just for Cachola.
Police sources say another Sergeant, Mike Kahikina also faces discipline for violating policies. He was the responding supervisor. Sources say he did not make officers do a written report, did not notify a higher ranking officer and did not notify internal affairs, all violations.
Cachola and Kahikina are on desk duty while the investigation continues.
Police sources also tell me, an officer in a blue & white squad car drove Cachola home from the scene that night. The officers apparently said he was too drunk to drive himself.