HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - A domestic violence suspect escaped from bail bondsmen right outside the entrance to Honolulu Police headquarters over the weekend, leading them on a chase that ended with the suspect complaining he was beaten up by his captors.
Akoni-Hoke Dias, 34, had been arrested by bail bondsmen from 4Freedom Bailbonds at a 7-11 store in Waianae early Saturday morning, according to James Ling of 4Freedom Bailbonds.
Dias was wanted on an $11,000 contempt of court warrant on Oahu and another $80,000 in warrants on the Big Island, Ling said.
Dias was waiting on a bench outside the main police station entrance just after 1 a.m. Saturday as a police officer was confirming that he was wanted on warrants in a domestic violence case, and the bail bondsmen had handcuffed with his hands behind his back.
"We moved his handcuffs to the front so he could smoke a cigarette. He asked to smoke a cigarette and we figured he was being compliant in the car, so we let him smoke," Ling said.
James Ling was one of four bail bondsmen watching Dias when Dias ran away from the police station entrance and down Beretania Street.
"And then he decided to run. And when he decided to run, we chased him down," Ling added.
Ling and the other bail bondsmen ran after Dias for several blocks, chasing him into the Queens Physicians Office Building III parking structure across from the Board of Water Supply.
Ling said Dias eventually fell down in a parking lot at the Queens Medical Center just off Punchbowl Street, where they caught him. Honolulu police officers came to assist, he said.
Dias later claimed the bail bondsmen beat him up, a charge Ling denied.
"No we did not beat him up. He did run, we didn't beat him up. He was on the ground by the time I got him. I held him down, that's about it," Ling said.
Police sources said Dias had no injuries when he first arrived at the police station, but when the bail bondsmen returned him after his escape attempt, he had suffered face, head, leg and knee injuries that were not consistent with a fall. Police opened a third-degree assault investigation.
Ling said he and his co-workers learned some important lessons from the brief escape.
"Probably don't let him smoke cigarettes. Keep 'em handcuffed, keep them detained and try watch and block any way that they could get away. Because if they do get away that would just be another fugitive on the loose," Ling said.
A police spokeswoman said there was no escape case made against Dias because he was not in custody of the police when he ran away.
Dias is at Oahu Community Correctional Center awaiting trial in a domestic violence case.
Ling said Dias ran from him just two weeks ago in Kailua outside a 7-11 store.
"When he started running the only thing I could think of was 'We're gonna lose him again, he's gonna get away.' And I just kept running to make sure he didn't get away," Ling said.
Ling said Dias would not have had time to escape if HPD had taken him into custody as soon as they arrived at police headquarters.
"He was saying he didn't want to do any time. He doesn't want to do this. So it definitely gave him a whole bunch of time to sit there and think of different ways he could get away," Ling said.
An HPD spokeswoman said the entire incident, including the initial arrival of Dias, his brief escape and recapture lasted less than ten minutes.
"It may have taken a little longer for HPD to confirm the warrant because of the high bail amount," the HPD spokeswoman said.