VIDEO: Mayoral Candidate Tazed by Police in Foot ChaseJuly 25, 2014, 7:50 AM HST · Updated July 25, 2:55 PM 0 Comments
By Wendy Osher
Maui mayoral candidate Beau Hawkes was arrested and released on bail after an encounter with police that resulted in him being tazed and handcuffed in Wailuku Town.
The incident was reported on Wednesday morning with the arrest portion captured on video tape by a bystander.
While the arrest occurred in Wailuku Town, the incident began when Beau Hawkes was pulled over while driving down the Haleakala Highway earlier that morning.
“I happened to be pulled over while talking to my ex-wife about where I will be picking my children up,” said Hawkes in an exclusive telephone interview this morning.
Hawkes said the officer indicated that the traffic stop was because he was driving a vehicle that did not have a license plate, and he was observed talking on his cell phone.
“I explained to the officer that I actually don’t need a license plate — that I’m a private individual here. I’m actually late for a meeting … I also told him that I had a right to use my cell phone if I’d like. That anti-cell phone law was enacted without the consent of we the people,” said Hawkes.
According to Hawkes, the officer asked him to turn off his vehicle, but Hawkes said he told the officer, “I’m late for a meeting. I have to go, at which point I drove off.”
“The officer went back to his car — ran back to his car and pursued me for approximately a half of a mile, at which point I saw him turn around and leave,” Hawkes explained.
“I told the officer where I was going so that he wouldn’t feel like I was running away from him (and) so he would know, hey, this is where I’m going and if you would like to have further conversation with me, you know where to find me. But I did have to get to that meeting in time because there was a lot of people showing up for that meeting on the eighth floor for the public testimony meeting for the GMO moratorium,” said Hawkes.
Hawkes said he ended up attending the meeting for about an hour and was walking across the street toward his vehicle, which was parked in a metered stall, when a police officer approached and parked in the cross walk outside of the Old Wailuku Court House building.
Hawkes said the officer told him to freeze and put up his hands. When he questioned the officer why, Hawkes said he was told that it was for resisting arrest and that the officer allegedly pursued to “grab and twist” his hands in an attempt to place handcuffs on him. We were unable to confirm this account with Maui police, and the video does not start until after the alleged conversation took place.
At the beginning of the video, the officer can be heard saying, “Put your hands behind your back. You are under arrest.” He repeated the statement twice in the video before Hawkes is seen breaking away and running down Wells Street from the area near the Old Court House Building.
Hawkes can be heard saying, “Come on cop. You can’t do this dude. You can’t do this.” Once Hawkes reached the area near the Hoapili Hale Second Circuit Court building, Hawkes then changed direction and ran back uphill.
“I saw that flash before me and my nature kick in, and I chose flight versus fight. I pulled my hand away from the officer and ran a few steps to create some distance between him and I,” said Hawkes in the phone interview. “I’m not interested in running down the road and escaping from the police officer. I’m only interested in creating some distance between him and I,” said Hawkes.
During the foot pursuit uphill, the officer can be heard telling Hawkes that he is being tazed as he draws his tazer and points it toward Hawkes who continues to run uphill.
Hawkes can be seen in the video falling to the ground within the mauka bound lane of travel. In the video, the officer instructs Hawkes several times to put his hands behind his back. During the arrest, Hawkes asks a bystander who he sees filming the incident, asks if it is being filmed, and tells the officer, “I’m not doing anything. I’m not resisting.”
At that point a second officer is seen arriving to assist in the arrest and the video ends.
Hawkes claims that the encounter with police did not end there and continued with a visit from medics, a trip to the police station, and a visit to the emergency room because of concerns he expressed over a potential staph infection from cuts on his toes and dirt in his hands from the incident.
Hawkes said that he holds no animosity toward the officer for doing “what he thinks is his job.” He continued, “I was very loving to everybody that I spoke with during the entire … four hour ordeal.”
The ticket that Hawkes was issued included a list of traffic infractions including: delinquent vehicle tax, no rear license plate, no certificate of inspection, no certificate of registration in the vehicle, no license on person, no front license plate, and talking on a cell phone.
Maui police confirmed that Hawkes received seven citations for traffic infractions.
Maui police’s Lieutenant Riky Uedoi tells Maui Now that the Hawkes was also charged for resisting arrest and for failing to obey a police officers direction by driving away from the scene.
Hawkes said that he will contest the charges in a written statement to the judge. The citation notes that there is a court appearance scheduled for 10:30 a.m. on Aug. 21, 2014 in Wailuku District Court.