Suspect Captured After Allegedly Causing Military Base Lockdowns

Suspect Captured After Allegedly Causing Military Base Lockdowns

( – Hawaiian law enforcement officials have had their hands busy in the wake of the wildfires that swept across Maui on August 8, killing at least 97 people. Residents of the hard-hit town of Lahaina only recently received word that they could enter the area to see what’s left of their homes after National Guard troops and local police officers fenced off the site. Most recently, officials detained a man after his potentially deadly actions caused a lockdown at two military bases and two schools.

On September 28, media outlets exploded with the news that law enforcement officials arrested a man on the run after he scuffled with an unknown number of soldiers at Schofield Army Barracks in Oahu. The suspect, later identified as 27-year-old Paul A. Smith, reportedly got into a physical altercation with at least one soldier at the base. Then, he allegedly fled the scene on foot. Witnesses observed him carrying a handgun.

Michael Donnelly, a US Army Hawaii command spokesperson, sent a brief statement to news agencies. He explained that military officials treated the incident as an “active shooter situation” even though no shots were fired. He also noted that commanders had placed a second military base in lockdown in addition to Schofield Barracks, which news outlets reported as Wheeler Army Airfield.

Likewise, media outlets reported that two public schools were also locked down. They included Solomon and Daniel K. Inouye elementary schools. Both are located on Schofield Barracks.

The US Army’s Directorate of Emergency Services and various Hawaiian police department officials tracked Smith down on Molokai island later that evening and arrested him without incident. A spokesperson for the Maui PD confirmed the suspect’s arrest but didn’t say whether he was armed when officials took him into custody.

Army Garrison Hawaii issued a statement later that evening advising that operations at Schofield Barracks were “returning to normal.” It stressed the importance of providing for the safety and security of soldiers, their families, and base employees. The notice also advised that the investigation into the incident is ongoing.

It remains unclear what charges, if any, Smith currently faces.

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