Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Police catch escapee
and alleged accomplice

Big Island police arrested a 29-year-old prison escapee last night in the Pepeekeo area of South Hilo.

Police found Joshua A.J. Reed near the Old Mill Road trying to hide in foliage beside the road. Reed was arrested without incident at 5:15 p.m. and charged with escape.

Police said he would be taken to the Hilo Medical Center for treatment of injuries sustained when he fled from police who spotted him Monday. Police then plan to turn him over to Hawaii Community Correctional Center authorities.


Reed escaped from the Kulani Correctional Facility on Aug. 1, and led police officers on a chase around the Big Island, said police, who noted that he had altered his appearance to escape detection.

He had been seen in Kona, in Kalapana and at beach areas of Puna and finally in Pepeekeo in South Hilo, police said.

At the time of his escape, he was serving a sentence for sexual assault, and police described him as dangerous.

East Hawaii Criminal Investigation Section detectives have also charged a 30-year-old woman for helping Reed avoid police capture.

The woman, identified as Brandi Coughlin of Pepeekeo, was charged yesterday with first-degree hindering prosecution. She is being held in the Hilo police cellblock in lieu of $2,000 bail.

Coughlin allegedly drove the escapee from the Kalapana area to Pepeekeo, where she then hid and fed him, according to police.

Police seized a 1991 blue Pontiac Bonneville allegedly used to transport the fugitive.



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