2 Hawaii Police Officers Shot, Killed After Responding to Assault Call: Reports

By Jack Phillips
Jack Phillips
Jack Phillips
Breaking News Reporter
Jack Phillips is a senior reporter for The Epoch Times based in New York. He covers breaking news.
January 19, 2020Updated: January 19, 2020

Two police officers were shot and killed in Hawaii on Sunday, according to news reports and local officials.

The Honolulu Mayor’s office confirmed the two officer deaths to the New York Times, while Hawaii News Now and the Honolulu Star-Advertiser also reported that both Honolulu officers died in the incident. A third officer was reportedly injured.

According to News Now, several homes in the Diamond Head neighborhood were destroyed by fire during the incident. The Honolulu Star-Advertiser added that officers had responded to an assault call near Diamond Head when they saw a man with a firearm before he opened fire.

Police surround a house
Police surround a house where a shooting suspect is believed to be in Honolulu, Hawaii, on Jan. 19, 2020. (Jamm Aquino/Honolulu Star Advertiser via AP)

Police sources have identified the suspect as Jerry Hanel, and it’s believed he has also died. Court documents show Hanel has a history of violent behavior and making false 911 reports according to Hawaii News Now.

The home the suspected gunman was believed to be inside caught fire before it spread to several other homes, reported The Associated Press. A parked police vehicle also caught on fire.

Councilwoman Kym Pine released a statement that confirmed the two officers’ deaths.

“My prayers and thoughts are with the families of the Honolulu Police Department officers who were killed and all who were injured during the Diamond Head incident today—my heart aches for all who are involved,” Pine said, according to the Star-Advertiser. Honolulu council member Tommy Waters also confirmed the death of the two police officers: “I’m deeply saddened by the loss of two of our officers, and I pray that no other officers are hurt.”

Honolulu’s mayor, Kirk Caldwell, also issued a statement and offered his condolences.

“I would like to express my deepest condolences to the family and friends of the two officers as well as the entire Honolulu Police Department. This is an unprecedented tragedy for not only the City and County of Honolulu but the entire state of Hawai’i,” he wrote on Twitter.

In another statement, the mayor said his “office is in communication with the Honolulu Police Department as more details about the circumstances around this horrific event come to light.”

FBI Honolulu Operational Support Technician Derek Hayes told CNN that the agency was responding to an “active shooter” situation but didn’t elaborate.