Court date set for suspect in ranger-involved shooting

KAILUA-KONA — Hawaii Island police are still seeking witnesses who were at Manuka State Wayside Park during a shooting involving a Hawaii Volcanoes National Park ranger.

The suspect, 39-year-old David Gouveia of Kailua-Kona, was located shortly after the Friday encounter and arrested.

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Gouveia, who suffered gunshot wounds from the confrontation, was charged for unauthorized control of a propelled vehicle and released, pending further investigation regarding an attempted murder charge.

On Wednesday during a preliminary hearing, the case was remanded to circuit court. Bail was maintained at $2,000. Gouveia’s next court appearance will be July 17 in front of Kona Circuit Judge Melvin Fujino.

Ka‘u patrol officers responded to a reported shooting incident Friday involving a law enforcement ranger from the park, according to police. The ranger was at the Kahuku Unit of the park, which is located near mile 70.5 on Highway 11, when he observed a vehicle with a male occupant. The vehicle had a tampered steering column.

A check with the ranger’s dispatcher confirmed the vehicle was stolen and that the Hawaii Police Department was looking for it. The vehicle left the area and the ranger left the park in search of it.

The ranger reported that upon locating the stolen vehicle at Manuka State Wayside Park and conducting a traffic stop, the suspect did not comply with the ranger’s instructions to exit the vehicle. Instead, the suspect reportedly drove his vehicle in the direction of the ranger, who thought he would be struck, police said.

The ranger fired several shots at the vehicle in an attempt to stop it. The ranger was unharmed.

Anyone with information about the incident should contact Detective Dominic Uyetake at 326-4646, ext. 228, or email at dominic.uyetake@hawaiicounty.gov.

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Those who prefer to remain anonymous can call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300.

A search of court records shows Gouveia has two terroristic threatening charges dating back to 2016 and scores of traffic violations and criminal contempt of court charges. He most recently pleaded no contest to terroristic threatening and received a four-year deferred acceptance of his guilty plea, meaning if he met all conditions the conviction could have been expunged from the record.

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