Alleged Squatter Arrested at Unfinished Home in Lava Zone Restricted Area

June 21, 2018, 11:26 AM HST · Updated June 21, 11:26 AM
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Geologist makes early morning observations of the lava fountain and channelized flow at fissure 8 in Leilani Estates. PC: June 20, 2018 courtesy US Geological Survey

Hawaiʻi Island Police have arrested a female within the Leilani Estates subdivision after it was discovered that she had unlawfully taken up residence in an unfinished house under construction on Alapai Street, police said.

On Thursday morning, June 21, a homeowner contacted police after encountering the unknown female on her property with indications that unauthorized persons had frequented that location in the past.

Police arrived and located a 36-year-old female, Jami Leonard, (listing no permanent address), within the structure which was located within a County designated zone declared for “residents only.”

Police say Leonard was arrested and charged with one (1) count of Criminal Trespass 1 and one (1) count of Loitering and Refusal to Evacuate.

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Total bail was set at $750, and Leonard remained at the Detention Center in Hilo awaiting her initial court appearance.

Hawaiʻi Island Police say they will continue to vigorously enforce Lava Restrictions in an effort to protect the public.

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