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Kubojiri named new isle police chief

Harry S. KubojiriHarry S. Kubojiri  


At a Police Commission meeting Wednesday evening, the Hawaii County Police Commission voted unanimously to appoint Deputy Chief Harry S. Kubojiri as police chief when Chief Lawrence K. Mahuna retires at the end of the year. Kubojiri will assume his new position Jan. 1.

In December 2002, Mahuna nominated Kubojiri to the deputy chief’s position and the Police Commission confirmed the nomination. Kubojiri previously served as major in charge of the Technical Services Section.

Kubojiri joined the Police Department as a police recruit in July 1979. During his police career, he served as a patrol officer in both the Kona and South Hilo Patrol Districts, a detective-sergeant in both the Criminal Investigations and Vice Sections of East Hawaii, a lieutenant in the Administrative Services Section and in the South Hilo Patrol District, captain of the South Kohala Patrol District and major in charge of the Field Operations Bureau in West Hawaii. He was also instrumental in organizing the Department’s Special Response Team, which he commanded from 2000 to 2006.

Kubojiri is a 1999 graduate of the FBI National Academy, a 2004 graduate of the Northwest Law Enforcement Executive Command College and a graduate of the University of Hawaii-Hilo, where he majored in police sciences.

He is married and has two children.

Mahuna, who retires on Dec. 31 after nearly 36 years of service, said he hand picked Kubojiri as his deputy chief in 2002 because he knew him to be a well-respected commander and a natural leader. Mahuna said the Police Department will be in good hands under Kubojiri’s leadership.

“He will have the honor of leading a dedicated team of professional men and women who will do everything within their power to make him proud,” Mahuna said. “I wish him the very best.”

Also in police news, Mahuna has promoted seven police officers to the rank of sergeant/detective, effective Dec. 1. They are:

• Derek K. Morimoto, sergeant, Communications Section

• Kelley K. Matsumoto, detective, Criminal Investigations Section, Area I

• John L. Briski, detective, Internal Affairs Unit

• Thomas A. Shopay, sergeant, Special Response Team

• Daylan D. Asuncion, detective, Juvenile Aid Section, Area I

• Renee E. Morinaka, detective, Juvenile Aid Section, Area II

• Wendall C. K. Carter, sergeant, Ka’u District

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