Surveillance Video: HI-Tech Kīhei in Shambles After Vehicle Drives “In and Out” of Store
* Updated August 16, 11:48 AM
By Wendy Osher
Video surveillance shows the employee who was working at the time, narrowly escaped injury as a pick-up truck drove back and forth within the Hi-Tech store in Kīhei on Wednesday afternoon.
Update: Suspect Arrested for First Degree Criminal Property Damage
Maui police located the suspected vehicle unattended along Auhana Road in Kīhei, and after searching the immediate area for the driver, officers located Kekoa Kinimaka, 20, of Kīhei. Kinimaka was arrested for first degree criminal property damage and was transported to the Wailuku Police Station without incident. Damages to the building and its contents are estimated to be more than $20,000. Kinimaka remained in in police custody at last report.
Previous Post: Store in Shambles After Vehicle Drives “Back and Forth”
The Hi-Tech surf store in Kīhei was left in shambles on Wednesday afternoon when a motorist reportedly drove through the back door, through the front window, and went “back and forth” within before exiting. According to initial reports, the front windows, back doors, inventory and fixtures were destroyed in the incident.
There was also a worker behind the counter when the truck drove through the store, but he was uninjured in the ordeal, which was reported at around 4:43 p.m. on Aug. 11, 2021.
The employee who was working in the shop at the time tells Maui Now that, “it definitely was not an accident.” According to the employee account to Maui Now, the driver drove through the back door, and continued through the front window, then reversed, hitting the back door frame, driving “in-and-out” of the store “back and forth,” before exiting the structure.
The vehicle reportedly fled out the back entrance, speeding off via Auhana Road and crashing into a ditch. Store employees were unsure if a suspect had been identified at last report.
While a couple of crash-and-run type robberies were reported at the store’s Kahului location in the past, this incident in Kīhei was described as something that they have never dealt with before. Witnesses say the driver did not take anything, and although a motive remains under investigation, appeared to be “intentional.”
The worker in the shop was alone at the time, sitting at the cash wrap station, when he heard “screeching of tires,” which he said is not particularly unusual for that intersection. The employee reportedly stood up to see what was happening, when he “heard a loud pop,” saw “glass fly everywhere,” and observed the taillights of a truck within the store.
The employee exited out the backdoor into the parking lot as the vehicle went “back and forth” within. The employee called the incident “careless, heinous, and at the very least negligent,” saying he was afraid for his life. The employee said he ran out of the store when he realized that the incident was “not an accident.”
He made a call to police, as others within the Island Surf building were already in contact with law enforcement.
Work was done to cleanup the shop, located at 2021 South Kīhei Road, on Wednesday evening, and put temporary boards on the windows and doors. Plans are to continue to work to clean up today and open up as soon as possible, either today or tomorrow.
The investigation is ongoing.
*Maui Now reached out to Maui police for information about the suspect. This story will be updated as more information becomes available.