By Wendy Osher ***New video now posted. (Posted: 4/2/12 12:12 p.m.; Update 2:57 p.m., 6:15 p.m. 4/2/12)
Seven adult dogs and five puppies were killed in a kennel fire on Mo’olu Road in Waikapu last night, according to authorities.
Fire inspectors say the blaze was intentionally set, and investigators with the Maui Police Department say a possible accelerant was used. A preliminary investigation indicates that the fire started within the storage shed, which was not equipped with a power source.
Police are working on leads and have a possible suspect identified, according to Lt. Peter Delima with the Criminal Investigation Division.
The incident was reported at 10:38 p.m. on Sunday, April 1, 2012 on the remote property located in an area of heavy brush between the Waiolani and Kehalani Mauka subdivisions.
Lt. Delima said the dogs were not a special breed, but authorities say they were used for hunting and herding.
Neighbors in the Waiolani subdivision say they heard a loud commotion with dogs barking late last night. Nearby residents say they often hear barking coming from the field to the north of the subdivision, but were unsure who the dogs belonged to.
In addition to the canine deaths, the 120 square-foot kennel and storage shed was destroyed.
Maui Fire Services Chief Lee Mainaga estimated damages at $2,000 to the structure, and $12,000 in damage to the contents, including the dogs.
Authorities say there is no home on the property, just a large expanse of pasture land, storage, and the kennel facility.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Maui Police Department at (808)244-6400 or Crimestoppers at (808)242-6966.