Officer’s firing part of reported MPD discipline

A Maui Police Department officer was fired, and suspensions were ordered for nine other officers as part of internal investigations that concluded in October, December and January, police reported.

The officer was fired last month after being suspended for 14 days for the “commission of a criminal act – abuse of a household/family member” in November, according to police.

The officer’s name wasn’t made public.

But based on the date and charges, the fired officer appears to be Nelson Johnson, who was arrested on charges of second-degree assault and two counts of abuse of a family member occurring Nov. 19 at a Wailuku residence.

That evening, police said Johnson slapped his 14-year-old daughter on her forehead for missing school and failing to do her chores. After she complained of pain and dizziness, she was transported to Maui Memorial Medical Center, where she was found to have suffered a concussion.

Police said an investigation showed that the girl was slapped three times by her father in the garage, and she fell back and hit her head on an air-conditioning unit. The girl’s 10-year-old brother also was slapped, police said.

Johnson, who posted $5,000 bail to be released, has pleaded not guilty to the charges and is awaiting trial in the case in 2nd Circuit Court. Police said Johnson was placed on administrative leave from his job as a patrol officer after his arrest.

On Wednesday, police said Johnson was no longer a department employee and declined further comment.

In other disciplinary actions, 10-day suspensions were ordered for an officer who refused to obey a direct order in June and an officer who “engaged in inappropriate and unwelcome conduct” while off duty in August.

Also in August, an officer failed to properly investigate a burglary and was untruthful, resulting in a five-day suspension, police reported.

Another officer was suspended for five days and transferred for issuing “discouraging and negative advice to subordinates” in January 2013.

Three-day suspensions were imposed for failing to properly supervise and falsifying time and attendance records in one case and for failing to properly supervise and take appropriate action in another case, both in January 2013.

An officer who was involved in a motor vehicle accident and drove without a valid driver’s license in February 2013 was suspended for two days.

One-day suspensions were ordered for an officer involved in a motor vehicle accident after driving in unauthorized emergency mode in January 2013, an officer who failed to report and submit evidence properly in February 2013, and an officer who reversed into a wooden structure in a motor vehicle accident in July.

Two written reprimands were issued for December 2012 incidents of failing to notify and obtain assistance in a burglary investigation and failing to complete an internal investigation of a subordinate in a timely basis. Written reprimands also were given for failing to adhere to the department’s computer policy and procedures and for being inattentive and hitting a parked vehicle in a motor vehicle accident, both in April.

Oral reprimands were given in five other motor vehicle accidents when an officer:

* Reversed into a parked vehicle in April.

* Failed to negotiate a turn and hit a fire hydrant in June.

* Failed to stop and collided into a vehicle in June.

* Hit a large boulder on a private driveway in September.

* Hit a concrete curb in October.

Allegations were not sustained on complaints for failing to properly supervise and take appropriate action in January 2013, failing to adhere to department computer policy and procedures in April, calling in sick and engaging in a discussion with an officer in April, making inappropriate comments in May, having no authority to remain on private property while off duty in June, harassing a co-worker in July and having unprofessional conduct toward another employee in July.

The names of the officers were not made public.

People who wish to comment on the Maui Police Department or the actions of its employees may contact the employee’s commander or write to Chief Gary Yabuta in care of the Maui Police Department, 55 Mahalani St., Wailuku 96793.