Two stabbing incidents on different parts of the island shake up Oahu residents

Lynn Uyeda
Lynn Uyeda
Claire Gordon | Lucas Baroza
Claire Gordon | Lucas Baroza
Police arrested the man shown here in the center in the Koko Head Crater incident
Police arrested the man shown here in the center in the Koko Head Crater incident
Jordan Falego
Jordan Falego
Victim after victim was taken away by ambulance after two groups got into a fight Sunday night in Kalihi
Victim after victim was taken away by ambulance after two groups got into a fight Sunday night in Kalihi

By Leland Kim - bio | email

OAHU (KHNL) -  A dangerous day on Oahu Sunday as police and emergency crews respond to two stabbings on different parts of the island, each happening within a matter of hours.

The first attack happened in Hawaii Kai Sunday afternoon at the top of Koko Head Trail at about 3:40 pm. Police say a suspect stabbed two men in separate incidents near the lookout area.

"This gentleman came out of the lookout area, and he said there's somebody up there with a knife and he held out his hand to show that he was bleeding," said Lynn Uyeda, a witness who lives near the trail.

One victim was in critical condition and the second man was in serious condition Sunday evening at The Queen's Medical Center.   Police caught the suspect at about 7:45 pm, but for witnesses who helped out the victims, Sunday's events changed how they look at their favorite hiking trail.

A rescue helicopter cuts through Koko Head Trail's typical serenity.  It transported a man in his fifties from the top of the trail.  Uyeda was there.

"He held out his hand to show that he was bleeding and he goes, 'There's a guy up there with a knife.  Get down,'" said Uyeda.  "He looked behind him just to see if the guy was following him, and I go, 'Oh you're cut in the back.'"

Claire Gordon helped the victim.

"It was just out of nowhere, that's what the victim said. Literally just sitting there and someone came up with a knife and said, 'You need to get off the phone now,'" said Gordon, a 17-year-old student at University Laboratory School (UH Lab).  "He turned around and saw the knife and tried to jump off and still ended up getting stabbed in the back."

Witnesses were naturally shaken up.

"What was your reaction when you saw what happened?" asked KHNL.

"I was scared. I mean, we're only teenagers," said Gordon. "I go up this hike all by myself sometimes and this is the first time anything like this has every happened."

"Thinking about it, I wouldn't want to be left up there," said Lucas Baroza, Gordon's 16-year-old classmate at UH Lab who also helped the victim.  "It's a very noble thing to stay and help out with that anyways. We just wanted to help out as much as we could."

The suspect stabbed a second victim, a man in his twenties, multiple times.  He was taken to the hospital in critical condition.

"I was so concerned for my kids," said Uyeda. "What if he came running out of nowhere with a knife?  I had my daughter's friend with us and it was fear. Fear for their safety and it was like 'Oh my gosh.' What do you do?  You're stuck on this trail."

Honolulu Fire Department crews and Honolulu Police Department's Specialized Services Division combed the area on the trail and at the perimeter with M-4 semiautomatic weapons and K-9 dogs starting midday and continued past sundown.

They found the suspect stuck in a tree naked, near the trail.

"I think the most important thing is to the good work of the responding officers, they were able to create a perimeter where he could not come down and escape the mountain," said Maj. Frank Fujii, a spokesperson for the Honolulu Police Department.

While the neighborhood is once again safe, residents are still shaken up.

"I don't think I'll ever go up alone ever again," said Gordon.  "It's kind of scary."

The suspect is in jail pending official charges.  Police have 48 hours to charge the suspect.

And just after the Super Bowl ended, dozens of police officers swarmed Kalihi Valley, after a big fight broke out.

Part of Kalihi Street was closed for about an hour, as victim after victim was taken away by ambulance.  Two victims had stab wounds and were in serious but stable condition, while four others had been attacked with baseball bats or other weapons.

But even though this was a large fight, one of the victims says he has no idea what started it.

"Me and my cousin were just hanging out when a group of guys came up and started fighting," said Jordan Falego, who lives in Kalihi.  "My cousin got his head bashed in."

Following the fight, police interviewed witnesses, but because it involved two large groups, officers were at the scene well into the evening investigating the altercation.  They have opened an assault case because of the brawl.