Police identify suspect accused in fatal stabbing of 77-year-old security guard
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - After an intense islandwide manhunt, police arrested a 51-year-old man Wednesday afternoon in connection with the fatal stabbing of a security guard at a Kaneohe strip mall.
The Honolulu Police Department said William Michael Bell faces second-degree murder charges.
He was arrested by the Windward Oahu Crime Reduction Unit.
Loved ones have identified the stabbing victim as Mike Chu, 77, an active member of the community and a longtime youth sports referee. Authorities say Chu was working as a security guard at Windward City Shopping Center about 6 a.m. Tuesday when he was stabbed multiple times while sitting in his car. Police said he had just arrived at work.
This recent crime has left the community reeling, calling for more to be done to improve safety.
“I think we’ve been going down this road for a while now. It’s unfortunate innocent people lose their lives, but I think what we have to do now is learn from it,” said Brandon Wolff, a Kailua resident.
“We have to come up with solutions. I think public safety should be a high priority, top priority.”
Friends said Chu was a well-known referee who was very active in the Kailua Community Basketball League.
“Really sad for everyone. It’s a big loss for the whole community because Mike was just a well liked individual. I’m sure he’d want us to move on, for the kids,” said Gary Tanouye, a friend of Chu.
Chu leaves behind two children.
He was expecting the arrival of his first grandchild in January, loved ones said.
Friends of Mike Chu say he would often come to McDonalds in Kaneohe and get unsweetened tea. On Wednesday, many people came out here to a memorial set up outside 24 Hour Fitness not just to lay flowers but also place cups of unsweetened tea to honor his memory.
“Its somebody that everybody knows and everybody really cared about if you went to Castle,” said Maximus Napolean.
Gloria Faltstorm has lived in the area more than more than 40 years and workouts at the 24 Hour Fitness near where Chu was murderd.
“It’s sad,” said Faltstorm. “I think people were not as much worried about crime (back then).”
Brandon Wolff has lived on O’ahu’s windward side his whole life and says the recent murder in his quiet community highlights the need for more attention to public safety.
“I’m a big supporter of law enforcement. I think they are a huge asset to the community and I think they just need a lot more support and resources,” said Wolff. “They’ve been under scrutiny and in my opinion their moral is at an all time low. I think what we got to do now is learn from it.”
But at Chu’s memorial on Wednesday, it was clear many are still grieving, trying to process the senseless loss of a man loved by many. A father, husband, and soon to be grandfather.
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