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Police respond to knife wielding teenager at Hawaii high school

On Tuesday, Jan. 28, police officers responded to a high school in Hawaii and shot a teenage runaway in the wrist. The police officer had to resort to force after the teenager cut one officer with a knife and punched two others.

Police shoot knife wielding teenager at Roosevelt High School.
Marco Garcia/AP/MSN

A teenage runaway, 17, and former student showed up at Roosevelt High School near downtown Honolulu. Police were contacted by a school official that recognized the boy and knew he wasn’t supposed to be there. The former student was not registers for any classes at the high school.

Honolulu police Maj. Richard Robinson reported that police officers arrived at the school and tried to take the boy into custody peacefully. However, he lunged at one of the officers with a kitchen knife cutting the officer on the torso.

The boy then attacked two additional officers punching them. Neither of those two officers suffered serious injuries. One of the officers then fired two shots hitting the teenager one time in the wrist.

EMS spokeswoman Shayne Enright stated that the boy was transported by ambulance in serious condition but did not have life-threatening injuries.

According to Robinson, the officer who fired the shots is now on administrative leave pending an investigation. President of the statewide police officers union Tenari Maafale stated that the knife in the boy’s possession posed a clear threat and the officers are trained to stop the threat regardless of the suspect’s age.

Maafala stated, “They didn’t come here looking to shoot somebody.”

"They didn't come here looking to shoot somebody," said Maafala, who went to the school as part of the Honolulu police peer support unit.

Carolyn Richardson gathered with other parents outside Roosevelt High School when news of a shooting at the school spread throughout the community. Numerous parents were visibly shaken and were texting and calling their children who were on lockdown inside the school.

Richardson said, “This is really freaking me out.” Richardson told reporters she found out about the shooting at approximately 9 a.m. when her son, CarDarow texted her. He alerted her that he had heard shots had been fired but that he was okay.

The school was cancelled for the day at about 10 a.m. and resumed the next day. Schools Superintendent Kathryn Matoyoshi stated, “Incidents like this are very rare in Hawaii; however, our partnership with the Honolulu Police Department on safety drills played a major role in the success of today’s lockdown.”

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