Over the past few weeks, on O‘ahu, Kaua‘i, and Hawai‘i Island, officers from the DLNR Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement (DOCARE) have cited 34 people for violations of State Parks rules, self-quarantine and the governor’s stay-at-home orders, associated with the COVID-19 crisis..
Hawai‘i Island DOCARE Officers cited 28-year-old Hanna Stauffer, of Kailua-Kona, for Entering a Closed Area. Stauffer was allegedly observed by a DOCARE Officer loitering within Hāpuna Beach State Recreation Area which had been closed by the DLNR Division of State Parks. 31-year-old Sergey Bulgutenko, of Russia, was cited for violating terms of the State’s self- quarantine order. Bulgutenko was observed by a DOCARE Officer operating a small dinghy in an erratic manner at Waiākea Public Fishing Area in Hilo. A subsequent investigation revealed Bulgutenko had arrived in the Port of Hilo aboard a sailing vessel and had been given the self-quarantine order by the Hawai‘i Department of Transportation-Harbors Division.
On Kaua‘i, DOCARE Officers have cited ten people for violating State Park closures at Kalalau, Polihale, Kōkeʻe, ʻŌpaekaʻaFalls and Wailua River State Parks. The eight individuals are: Rachel Hubbard of Kapa’a, Devon Hudson of Hanapepe, Ariel Overton of Kalāheo, Gianna Camarillo of Koloa, Kaylee Alapai of Kōloa, Glen Patrick Agunda of Kapa’a, and Edward Stephens & Allison Donnelly of Washington State. DOCARE Officers on patrol in the area of the Wailua Falls Lookout observed Assison Bulosan of Līhuʻeand Donica Abalos of Kapa’a acting suspiciously. Both were contacted and subsequent investigation revealed both were cited for allegedly being in violation of the governor’s stay-at-home orders.
DOCARE Enforcement Chief Jason Redulla noted, “In addition to these violations, aimed at keeping everyone safe during this crisis, DOCARE officers conducting law enforcement operations recently at the long-closed Sacred Falls State Park cited ten (10) individuals. Not only were they violating stay-at-home orders and closed-area laws, they were putting their lives and the lives of emergency first-responders at risk. The park is closed for good reason.” Eight people lost their lives and dozens of others were injured in May of 1999 when rocks fell from the near-vertical canyon walls of the park. It has been off-limits since the tragedy. Redulla noted that many of the citations happened on a day when all of O‘ahu was under a flash flood watch.
At Diamond Head State Monument on O‘ahu, a dozen people have been issued citations for entering the park while closed.