Police hunt 2 suspects in Palolo home robbery


POSTED: Monday, May 24, 2010

Eight staples close a gash on the back of Josh Hershey's head, and glue seals a cut behind his ear.

His wounds came from a shotgun used as a bludgeon in a robbery yesterday at a home in Palolo.

Police were still searching last night for two suspects in the violent heist that began shortly before 4 a.m. at 2001 10th Ave.

Four men with shotguns, a handgun and knives entered a second-floor unit on the hillside house and demanded drugs, money and a safe, police said.

The men wore bandannas on their faces and tied up and robbed six victims of cash and cell phones, Hershey said.

Approaching officers saw two men in the street run toward the home and up the mountain behind the house.

An 18-year-old man, who has no local address, turned himself in at the scene at 6:05 a.m., police said. He was arrested on suspicion of first-degree robbery, first-degree burglary and six counts of kidnapping. A 28-year-old man was found hiding in a small cave on the mountainside and arrested on suspicion of burglary and robbery at about 10:25 a.m.

;[Preview]  Palolo Street home invasion puts four in hospital

Four suspects stormed a home on Palolo Street.


Watch ]





Hershey, 20, said he awoke in bed when several young men began punching him. As he fought back, one of them struck his head repeatedly with the butt of the shotgun, then tied his hands behind his back.

During the scuffle, the shotgun barrel was pointed into his face several times, he recalled.

“;I was ready to be shot in the face,”; said Hershey, a Kapiolani Community College student on summer vacation.

He said he got the worst injuries because he fought back. His left cheek also was bruised.

One of Hershey's roommates, who did not want to give his name, said he woke up to a struggle outside his bedroom door and cracked the door open to see “;two kids”; walk by—one carrying a shotgun, another a revolver.

He told his roommate to call the police and waited for help, but the armed suspects burst into his room.

“;They tied us up with computer cords, any kind of cord they could get their hands on,”; he said. “;They were just like, 'Give us everything.'”;

He said he suspected the men were amateurs because the house was a poor target, with little of value.

“;We're a bunch of college kids,”; he said.

Hershey said he does not know how the robbers got in; he had locked the door before going to bed at about 2:30 a.m. The house, which has several empty units under renovation, perches above street level and behind a locked fence.


After police arrived, officers swarmed the area with dogs, and Specialized Services Division officers searched the hillside. A helicopter circled overhead.

Neighbors said police entered an abandoned house two lots down, hunting for the suspects.

Hershey said officers recovered the stolen cell phones from one of the men who was arrested and found a bag of shells on the ridge behind the house. In their rush to get away, the robbers left behind laptops and TVs, he said.

Hershey said he believes the men knew the house from the gatherings and barbecues the housemates held. Neighbors said the young people at the house often party.

May Goya, who lives across the street, said she frequently hears sirens in the area because it is one of the main thoroughfares into Palolo.

She said it might be time to start a neighborhood watch.