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Dozen protesters arrested on Mauna Kea for blocking roadway


Twelve persons were arrested Thursday (April 2) after blocking access to construction workers who were en route to the summit of Mauna Kea to begin work on the Thirty-Meter Telescope.

“During the arrests, our officers practiced the Hawaiʻi Police Department’s core value of compassion,” said Assistant Chief Henry Tavares, who oversees police operations in East Hawaiʻi.

Earlier in the week, police were in communication with protesters opposed to the telescope, informing them that they had the right to protest peacefully and asking for a peaceful resolution and cooperation in keeping the roadway open. At that time, police informed the protesters that anyone who blocked the public road leading to the construction site would have to be arrested.

The arrests began at approximately 8 a.m. Thursday and were still in progress at noon. These individuals were taken to the Hilo police station for processing and then released after posting $250 bail:

  • Ronald Fujiyoshi, 75, of Hilo
  • Moanikeala Akaka, 70, of Hilo
  • Joseph Kanuha, 56, of Kailua-Kona
  • Eric Heaukulani, 38, of Kealakekua
  • Kelii Ioane Jr., 63, of Hilo
  • James Albertini, 68, of Kurtistown
  • Erin O’Donnel, 40, of Kamuela
  • Craig Neff, 56 ,of Pāpaʻikou
  • Gary Oamilda, 66, of Ocean View
  • Chase Kahookahi Kanuha, 26, of Kailua-Kona
  • Dannette Henrietta Godines, 45, of Hilo
  • Lambert Lavea, 27, of Mountain View

Additional enforcement was conducted by the Department of Land and Natural Resources, which is responsible for enforcement on property owned by the state.

5 Responses to “Dozen protesters arrested on Mauna Kea for blocking roadway”

  1. Maile says:

    This count is inaccurate. There were OVER a dozen detained, and NONE OF THEM were read their RIGHTS! No Marandize of ANY DETAINEE!

    • Phil Stone says:

      I think the government said a year or two, maybe more, that there is no longer a need to be read your rights.
      That wasn’t Hawaii news, that was Mainland news.

      • Lani says:

        One can be briefly detained and it does not trigger the right for Miranda. Mainland and Hawaii, fall under the protections of the US Constitution, requiring Miranda under certain circumstances per the 4th Amendment. I think one should be clear when they say they want to be sovereign from the US and yet, at the same time they want their rights to be protected under the laws of the US… sounds a little contradictory. Seeing the live feeds, Hawaii Officers appeared to be incredibly respectful of everyone’s rights and probably no arrests would’ve been made had the peaceful protest continued on the side of the road. But when they blocked the road, a public access road built by the state, their 1st Amendment rights can be limited when they’re violating a criminal code and inciting others to do the same. The police had to do their job. I hope our Hawaiian people are meeting with those who can file proper paperwork and fight the construction in other ways too, in addition to these peaceful protests! Aloha!

  2. Phil Stone says:

    Fromnthe photo I seen of the 30 meter telescope, it looks as if it can’t turn on its base like most telescopes.
    It might be able to rotate the eye arounds that one face, but that’s it.

    Maybe there is more to their protest than what some see?

  3. Roedy Green says:

    For millennia, observatories have been considered holy sites. It is not as though they are building an oil refinery. The time to protest was when Keck was built.
    This is silly superstition perhaps with some ulterior motive. I doubt the people protesting even belong to a relevant religion. Worshipping volcanoes and throwing teens in went out long ago.


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