US Marshals join intense manhunt for ‘armed and dangerous’ fugitive on Kauai as family demands justice

The manhunt for a murder suspect on Kauai is now stretching into its second week. Chris Santos is wanted killing a man last week on Kahili Mountain Road in Kolo
Published: Sep. 15, 2023 at 5:09 PM HST|Updated: Sep. 16, 2023 at 10:21 AM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The manhunt for a murder suspect on Kauai is now stretching into its second week. Chris Santos is wanted killing a man last week on Kahili Mountain Road in Koloa.

The victim has been identified as 28-year-old Kith Silva-Lacro of Kalaheo.

“He was my baby, my baby, just 28 years old,” said his mother, Paula Bacio as she cried during an interview.

“My son didn’t deserve anything like that,” she added.

Kauai police have been scouring the county for Santos, who is considered “armed and dangerous.”

Earlier this week, U.S. Marshals joined the search, which experts say could signal that Santos’ time on the run is nearing an end.

“It’s not a matter of if he’s going to get captured, it’s when and he will get captured,” said retired U.S. Marshal David Milne.

With nearly 30 years of expertise, Milne knows what it takes to track down a fugitive.

He’s not actively part of the seach for Santos on Kaua’i, but says the Marshals have a full slate of assets and tracking technology at their disposal.

As the search goes on, the heat keeps turning up.

“He’ll eventually start if he hasn’t already, start to feel the pressure of people looking for him,” Milne explained. “That wears on a person psychologically. He’s probably not getting great sleep. That’s the other factor.

“In order to stay sharp, you have to rest you have to get sleep and I’m not sure what he’s eating for sustainability for food.”

Silva-Lacro’s aunt had a message for Santos.

“Be a man,” Maryann Manintin said. “You did something wrong. Own up to your mistake.”

Milne has been a part of several high profile investigations surrounding notorious criminals including drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, the Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokar Tsarnaev and mobster Whitey Bulger.

It’s a career of experiences he’s documenting in an upcoming book

“There’s a culture within the U.S. Marshals and it’s full of tenacity and incredible professionalism and investigators that will not stop pursuing justice, especially people that have chosen to run from the law,” Milne said.

Santos has been on the run for the last week and Milne says his best course of action is surrender.

He says the Kauai community should expect to see ramped up activity within the coming days as Marshals continue their pursuit and need to remain vigilant.

“The biggest thing community members can do is keep their vehicles locked up, don’t present an opportunity,” Milne said. “Keep your houses locked. If you don’t normally lock them, start locking them, especially if you step away. Lock your garages, lock your sheds, any place that someone can get to.”

Anyone that assists Santos faces federal charges for hindering apprehension.

“All those people who ever get involved with him, I hope they all get caught,” said Bacio. “I want justice for my son, I don’t care what. He wasn’t a bad boy.”

Milne says any bit of information can play a critical role in the investigation and those with tips should contact authorities.