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Jelsma is East Hawaii’s Officer of the Month for February

MEDIA RELEASE

Aloha Exchange Club member Joey Estrella presents an 'Officer of the Month' award to Officer Christopher Jelsma

Aloha Exchange Club member Joey Estrella presents an ‘Officer of the Month’ award to Officer Christopher Jelsma

The Aloha Exchange Club of East Hawaiʻi recognized Officer Christopher Jelsma on Thursday (February 25) as the East Hawaiʻi “Officer of the Month” for February.

Jelsma was honored for his fast actions during the arrest of an armed man who was wanted for escape and furlough violation.

Shortly after 1 a.m. on December 5, Jelsma attempted to arrest the man and a wanted woman in a dimly lit parking lot on Rainbow Drive. The suspect, described as 6-foot-5 and 227 pounds, challenged Jelsma to shoot him and then reached under the seat for a loaded .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol. Jelsma warned his fellow officers and struggled with the man for control of the gun, putting himself at substantial risk to his personal safety. He was able to wrestle the firearm away from the suspect, who immediately bolted out of the open driver’s door. Following a short foot chase down an embankment, Jelsma detained the suspect.

“Officer Jelsma’s mindset and manner in which he reacted to the events brought this incident safely under control just as rapidly as it had escalated with the arrest of a convicted felon in possession of a loaded firearm,” said Lieutenant Miles Chong, who nominated Jelsma for the honor. “In successfully disarming the suspect, Officer Jelsma’s actions prevented the probability of death or serious bodily injury to himself, the assisting officers as well as the suspects.”

As “Officer of the Month,” Jelsma is eligible for “Officer of the Year.”

The East Hawaiʻi “Officer of the Month” award is a project of the Aloha Exchange Club of East Hawaiʻi.

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