A few months ago — when I was still sleeping on the street — I was walking down Kuhio Avenue, towards my spot. I was waiting for the light to change so I could cross. This was at the end of Duke’s Lane across the lane from Paia Fish Market.
As I waited to cross Kuhio, I became aware of two girls arguing.
This wasn’t unusual. It was a Friday night and Waikiki was busy. Lots of people means lots of possible conflicts.
I tried to ignore whoever it was that was harshing my mellow. But, then I caught a sudden movement out of the corner of my eye. At this point, I turned to look at who was causing the commotion.
Here’s what I saw:
Two teenage girls, The larger of the two — still less than five feet tall — was slamming the smaller girl on the ground. Then straddling the little girl and punching her in the ribs MMA style.
An older woman — who I took to be their mother was meekly and ineffectively, pleading with them to stop. A young man was also with them — maybe an older brother. He was also using words to tell them to stop, but didn’t physically intervene.
It didn’t take long for the first HPD squad car to arrive. The lone officer got out of his car and attempted to separate the girls.
It wasn’t happening.
Soon, a second and third officer arrived at the scene.
By the time it was all over, there were 11 squad cars parked along this section of Kuhio Avenue.
The first three officers were able to separate the girls.
The taller of the two sisters was made to sit on the curb, while the smaller girl was told to sit on the steps of Paia Fish market. An officer put the taller girl into handcuffs.
When the smaller girl saw this, she asked an officer what was happening. He told her that her sister was under arrest for assault. At this, the smaller girl jumped up angrily and started punching the officer in the chest. He was wearing a bulletproof vest, so her blows didn’t seem to have much effect.
At this point, the officers put her into cuffs as well. When they told her that she was under arrest too, she said — and here’s the punchline:
I’ve been a soldier, a teacher, an advocate for people with disabilities, an attorney and a ne’er-do-well. I’ve struggled with substance abuse and homelessness in Waikiki. Now I share the real Waikiki with visitors and residents alike.