Honolulu police vow to be more transparent after shootings

HONOLULU (AP) — The Honolulu Police Department says it is making changes to be more transparent and address use of force tactics.

The department will hold news conferences within 24 hours of all shootings involving officers, implement training changes including emphasizing de-escalation and cultural sensitivity and enact a near-total ban on shooting in vehicles. Interim Chief Rade K. Vanic announced the changes in response to questions earlier this week from the City Council’s executive matters and legal affairs committee.

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The announcement came after police shot and killed a 29-year-old Black man and a Micronesian teen in separate incidents. Honolulu Prosecuting Attorney Steven Alm this week announced murder and attempted murder charges against three officers in connection with the shooting of the teen.

Police said 16-year-old Iremamber Sykap was driving a stolen car linked to an armed robbery, burglary, purse snatching and car theft and led officers on a chase before the shooting.

Officers shot into the car from the sides and rear as it sat on a street after the chase.

It is the first time a police officer has been charged with a crime in connection with a police shooting in at least 45 years.

An Oahu grand jury declined to indict the officers in the incident last week.

Alm’s office is also investigating the fatal shooting of 29-year-old Lindani Myeni.

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Myeni is shown on video entering and then leaving a home in Honolulu before encountering police. A seemingly frightened resident inside the home called 911 and Lindani then fought with three officers.

Video shows one officer fired a stun gun after yelling “Taser” before police shot and killed Myeni as he fought. After the shots were fired an officer is heard saying, “Police!”

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