Hawai‘i County Police Department

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Hawaii Police Patches

The Hawai'i County Police Department provides police services for the island of Hawai'i, known locally as the "Big Island". According to the 2010 Census, it covers 4,028.02 square miles (10,433 km2) of varied terrain with 185,079 residents and thousands of visitors.[1]

Operation Bureaus[edit]

The chief of police is Harry S. Kubojiri.[2] For police purposes the island is divided into two areas: Area I, east Hawaiʻi, which includes the districts of Hāmakua, North Hilo, South Hilo and Puna, with total area of 1,685 square miles (4,360 km2); and Area II, west Hawaiʻi, which includes North Kohala, South Kohala, North Kona, South Kona, and Ka'ū, an area of 2,345 square miles (6,070 km2). Each district is headed by a police captain, and each area by a commander.[3]

Police car issue[edit]

Subsidized Honolulu Police car

As with the Honolulu Police Department, Hawaiʻi County Police has a fleet of marked police cars as well as subsidized police cars, meaning they allow officers to use their personally owned vehicles as police cars.[4] Department subsidized vehicles are made distinguishable as on duty police vehicles by the addition of a removable blue strobe beacon light strapped to the roof of the vehicle. This has prompted controversy within the local community as many residents and police officers would prefer to have dedicated and fully marked fleet of police vehicles. However, the County believes this would be a cost prohibitive expense to take on all at one time and believes it would be financially prudent to continue subsidizing the police officers with a stipend to pay for a police vehicle. Many police officers view this as an additional incentive or benefit of the job. In a recent effort to promote higher visibility, the department increased the stipend by an additional $50/month if the vehicle the officer uses in their daily police use is white in color. Police departments on the islands of Kauai & Maui who also at one time had a similar program for subsidizing police vehicles have mostly stopped using the subsidized program and their fleets are now fully marked. The Kauai Police Dept. does have a few subsidized vehicles as of 2014.

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