A 33-year-old Pahoa man arrested in connection with a hostage situation in Puna on Tuesday has been flown to Oahu for treatment of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to his face.
Police identified the man as Jovin Chang.
At 5:39 a.m. Tuesday, police responded to a report of a shooting on Nohea Street in the Leilani Estates Subdivision. Officers located the victim, a 25-year-old Kea'au man, on the side of the roadway with multiple gunshot wounds to his body.
The victim told police that he and his 30-year-old female passenger were being followed by a blue sport-utility vehicle in the Leilani Estates Subdivision that was driven by Chang. Both vehicles stopped on Nohea Street where the two men got into a confrontation on the roadway.
Following an argument, the victim was reportedly shot several times by Chang who then ordered the woman into his SUV before fleeing the area. The victim was transported by ambulance to the Hilo Medical Center where he remains in stable condition.
An officer saw the suspect's SUV turning into a residence on Leilani Avenue. As the officer approached the driveway on foot, he heard several gunshots coming from the vicinity of the residence. The officer established a perimeter with the assistance of other responding officers. The police officer was not injured.
Police asked neighboring residents to evacuate the area, for their own safety and the department’s Special Response Team was called to the scene. The incident was treated as a hostage situation after investigators learned the suspect barricaded himself in the residence with the 30-year-old woman along with four juvenile females. During the standoff, intermittent gunshots fired from the residence struck the unattended police vehicle that was left on the roadway.
The standoff ended around 2 p.m., when Chang walked out to Leilani Avenue with a self-inflicted gunshot wound to his face. A rifle was later recovered from the property. Chang was arrested for second-degree attempted murder and immediately taken to a staging ambulance. He was transported to the Hilo Medical Center in critical condition under police escort.
Due to the seriousness of his injuries, Chang was released from police custody later that evening when he was flown to Oahu for further treatment. He remains at the Queen's Medical Center and has since been upgraded to serious condition.
The hostages, who are all related to Chang, were found to be physically unharmed.
Anyone who witnessed this incident or may information about it is asked to call the Police Department’s non-emergency line at (808) 935-3311 or Detective Grant Todd of the Area I Criminal Investigation Section at (808) 961-2381 or Grant.Todd@hawaiicounty.gov.