(Reuters) - Two police officers in Hawaii were fatally shot by an assailant who remained at large on Sunday in a residential neighbourhood not far from busy Waikiki Beach on the island of Oahu, officials and local media said.
Smoke billowing from a fire at Kapi'Olani park where an ongoing shooting incident occurred in Honolulu, Hawaii in this still image obtained from a January 19, 2020 social media video. Twitter @HelloHiMattHere via REUTERS
“Our entire state mourns the loss of two Honolulu Police officers killed in the line of duty this morning,” Hawaii Governor David Ige said in a statement.
Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell called the shootings “an unprecedented tragedy” for the state.
A third officer was also injured in the incident in which several houses were set on fire in an affluent area near the base of Diamond Head, a volcanic mountain at the southern tip of the island, KITV News reported.
Michelle Yu, a Honolulu police spokeswoman, declined to comment on the incident, but said by telephone that a press briefing was expected later in the day.
A spokesperson for the Honolulu field office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation did not immediately reply to telephone message seeking information.
The incident started when officers arrived on the scene after the suspect wanted in the shootings stabbed his landlord who was trying to evict him, Hawaii News Now said, citing unidentified sources.
The officers were met with gunfire and the suspect then set fire to the home, which spread to other houses, Hawaii News Now reported.
The Honolulu Star-Advertiser said witnesses saw a female police officer being carried unconscious from the scene.
Pictures posted by local media showed smoke coming from several houses in the neighbourhood. Other local reports said the suspect was a man in his 60s.
Honolulu police said on Twitter that officers had shut down a street in the Diamond Head area “due to police investigation.”
Reporting by Peter Szekely in New York; Editing by Daniel Wallis