Hawaii News

Rule issued to protect habitat for false killer whales

HONOLULU (AP) — A federal agency will designate waters around Hawaii as protected critical habitat for endangered false killer whales. About 17,500 square miles of ocean habitat will be protected under a new rule by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Marine ...

Murder defendant mistakenly released from jail

By JENNIFER SINCO KELLEHER and AUDREY McAVOY The Associated Press HONOLULU — Big Island authorities were searching for a man charged with murder who was mistakenly released from jail while awaiting trial, the state Department of Public Safety said Thursday. Brian Lee Smith was being ...

Unknown disease strikes Big Island’s wild horse population

KAILUA-KONA (AP) — A mysterious disease affecting wild horses in Waipio Valley on the Big Island has prompted an investigation by Hawaii agencies and veterinarians. The disease makes the animals unable to walk, resulting in a number of wild horse deaths, West Hawaii Today reported ...

Hawaii tour passengers recall molten rock hitting their boat

By CALEB JONES HONOLULU — A passenger on a tour boat that was hit by lava off Hawaii’s Big Island last week shielded his girlfriend and said he was waiting for death as searing debris ripped through the catamaran’s roof. “I remember getting hit with the lava in my back and just ...

Appeals court strikes down Hawaii gun law

Citing 2nd Amendment ruling would allow people to openly carry firearms By BRIAN MELLEY The Associated Press LOS ANGELES — A federal appeals court ruled Tuesday that the Second Amendment protects the right to openly carry a gun in public for self-defense. The 9th U.S. Circuit ...

Hawaii GOP expels ‘pro white’ state candidate

HILO (AP) — The Hawaii Republican Party has expelled a state House candidate after learning of his racist views, officials said. The party expelled Bryan Feste, who is running against Grace Manipol-Larson for the Republican nomination for the Hilo-area seat, the Hawaii Tribune-Herald ...

Charges dropped for two women who buried whale

HONOLULU (AP) — Two Native Hawaiian practitioners will no longer face charges for illegally taking the remains of a small, ailing whale the pair had watched over before it died and burying them at sea off Kawaihae. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration last week dropped the ...

Big Island town pins hopes on lava tourism to provide economic relief

Lawmakers, visitors, business owners urge establishment of lava viewing soon By AUDREY McAVOY The Associated Press HONOLULU — Stunning images of erupting Kilauea volcano have captivated people around the world. But ironically it’s nearly impossible for residents and visitors on the ...

State / In Brief

The Associated Press Sailor killed at Pearl Harbor is buried I NGLEWOOD, Calif. — More than 76 years after he was killed in the attack on Pearl Harbor, a Navy sailor has been laid to rest in Southern California. Electrician’s Mate 3rd Class George Harvey Gibson was buried with full ...

Suspect in officer shooting is killed by police

Mayor: Second officer wounded but survives By JENNIFER SINCO KELLEHER The Associated Press HONOLULU — A man suspected of gunning down a Hawaii police officer was killed during a shootout with officers Friday after a three-day search across the Big Island, authorities said. Justin ...

Hawaiian monk seal named Rocky gives birth to 11th pup

HONOLULU (AP) — A Hawaiian monk seal named Rocky gave birth to her 11th pup on a remote shoreline on Kauai. Rocky and the baby monk seal appear to be doing well following the Monday delivery, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration officials said. Nine of Rocky’s pups were born on ...

Macadamia nut production increases from last season

KAILUA-KONA (AP) — Macadamia nut production and farm value in Hawaii increased during the 2017-18 season, according to figures from the National Agricultural Statistics Service. The state’s utilized maca-damia nut production increased by 17 percent from last season to 49 million pounds, ...

Police: Friends may be hiding Big Island suspect in shooting

By JENNIFER SINCO KELLEHER The Associated Press HONOLULU — A suspect wanted in the killing of the first Big Island police officer to be fatally shot likely remains hidden on the mostly rural eastern side of the vast island, authorities said Thursday. While the 4,028-square-mile island has ...

Hawaii lava boat tours continue after explosion

By AUDREY McAVOY and CALEB JONES The Associated Press HONOLULU — Hawaii tour boat operators plan to continue taking visitors to see lava, but will follow the Coast Guard’s revised policy and stay farther away after an explosion caused molten rock to barrel through the roof of a vessel, ...

Lava crashes through roof of tour boat

23 injured on Big Island sightseeing trip to volcano By AUDREY McAVOY and CALEB JONES The Associated Press HONOLULU — An explosion caused by lava oozing into the ocean sent molten rock crashing through the roof of a sightseeing boat off the Big Island, injuring 23 people Monday, officials ...

Mayor hoping to end buy of land swallowed by lava

KAILUA-KONA (AP) — Hawaii County Mayor Harry Kim is hoping the county will be able to back out of an ongoing land purchase that was started before the land was made worthless by lava inundation. The county was looking to purchase a $2.7 million Vacationland parcel owned by a politically ...

Lava swallows land Big Island was to buy

KAILUA-KONA (AP) — Lava flows have largely swallowed a $2.7 million land parcel that the Big Island government planned to buy to use as a buffer between development and the Waiopae tide pools. About two-thirds of the 284-acre property in the Vacationland community has been inundated, ...

Officials discuss housing plans after lava flows

Mayor: Restricting building in lava zones 1, 2 does not make sense KAILUA-KONA (AP) — Construction shouldn’t be prohibited in lava zones without compensating property owners for the lost use of their lands, Big Island Mayor Harry Kim said. The two lava zones with the highest risk of ...

New rule: Broadcasters are now to report false alerts

HONOLULU (AP) — The Federal Communications Commission is adopting a new rule to boost the reliability of emergency alerts after Hawaii earlier this year mistakenly sent warnings to cellphones and broadcasters that a ballistic missile was heading for the state. The commission said in a ...

Big Island firefighter accused of lying is placed on paid leave

HILO (AP) — A Big Island firefighter has been placed on paid leave after he was accused of lying to a federal grand jury about his relationship with a Honolulu deputy prosecutor in the fraud and corruption case against her and her husband. Jesse Ebersole was charged Monday in federal court ...