Authorities identify Big Island man who drowned while running fr - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Authorities identify Big Island man who drowned while running from police

(Image: Hawaii News Now) (Image: Hawaii News Now)
Akoni-Hoke Dias (Photo: Hawaii Island Police) Akoni-Hoke Dias (Photo: Hawaii Island Police)
PUNA, BIG ISLAND (HawaiiNewsNow) -

A Hawaii Island man who is presumed to have drowned while attempting to outrun police officers in the Hawaiian Beaches Subdivision on Monday has been identified.

Authorities said Tuesday 37-year-old Akoni-Hoke Dias was perched on a rock ledge, out of the reach of the officers who were in pursuit of him, when a large wave crashed onto the rocks and swept him out to sea.

He was last seen floating face-down in nearby waters.

Earlier Monday afternoon, Big Island police officers were responding to a 911 call in lower Puna when they found a large group of adults. As they approached the group, Dias started to run — heading straight toward a 15 -to 20-foot cliff. 

Officers say Dias was wanted on warrants for four drug-relatated crimes totaling $200,000. He was also wanted for questioning as a suspect in a burglary and kidnapping case last month.

As Dias attempted to flee, Big Island police say they were able to get a hold of him before he reached the edge, but he slipped from their grasp and reached a ledge five to 10 feet below. 

Officers say the spoke to Dias as he was standing on the rock ledge, but that he refused to come back up before he was eventually swept out to sea. 

This story will be updated.

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