EXCLUSIVE: 'Most wanted' fugitive killed in Hilo police shooting

EXCLUSIVE: 'Most wanted' fugitive killed in Hilo police shooting

HILO, HAWAII (HawaiiNewsNow) - A Kona man who was wanted by Big Island police for months was shot and killed early Friday in Hilo, and a 28-year-old woman who was in the car was critically injured.

Three patrol officers fatally shot 38-year-old Ronald Barawis Jr., who had a shotgun, rifle, and two semi-automatic guns within reach in the car he was driving, police say. He also had a bullet-proof vest in the vehicle.

The shooting happened shortly after midnight Friday, when patrol officers in Hilo tried to pull him over in the parking lot of the McDonald's in Puainako.

"Police had gotten out of the car and approached the vehicle and asked the driver to step out of the car," said Gordon Lewis, who witnessed the shooting, "He then put it in reverse and then he accelerated and tried to go thru the hedges and jump the curb and that's when the police opened fire."

The 28-year-old woman who was in the front seat of the car is in critical but stable condition at Hilo Medical Center, police said.

The three officers who fired shots have 20, 15 and six years of experience with the Hawaii Police Department.

Police said Barawis was wanted for bench warrants and was only paroled last year. He was convicted for shooting at a traffic officer in 2000 in Ocean View.

Police were also looking for Barawis to question him about a drive-by shooting late last year and another incident last month.

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