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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Friday, April 21, 2006

Stolen police firearm recovered

By Curtis Lum and Peter Boylan
Advertiser Staff Writers


HPD uniform with the name "T. Faumui" above the right front pocket

Badge No. 2879

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Police arrested two people yesterday in Leeward O'ahu and recovered a handgun that was stolen from the car of an off-duty police officer Wednesday.

A 26-year-old man and 30-year-old woman, both of the Wai'anae area, were booked for investigation of first-degree theft, a weapons violation and being felons in possession of a firearm and ammunition. They were being held in a police cellblock last night pending charges.

Police last night were investigating whether the two were involved in the break-in of Officer Taase Faumui's car Wednesday afternoon in 'Ewa. Among the items taken from Faumui's car were his police uniform, badge, a loaded 9 mm Smith & Wesson handgun, two magazines filled with 15 rounds each, his badge, his utility belt, his police radio and the uniform. In all, 46 rounds of 9 mm ammunition were taken, HPD spokesman Capt. Frank Fujii said. The police radio has been rendered inoperable by the communications division, police said.

As of last night, only Faumui's handgun had been recovered, police said.

The two suspects were arrested about 4:15 p.m. at Tracks Beach Park, just west of Kahe Point. Members of the Wai'anae police crime reduction unit saw two people get out of a vehicle at the park, police said.

Officers approached them. While talking to them, an officer saw the butt of a handgun sticking out of a bag in the vehicle, police said. The handgun was recovered, and a check of its serial number revealed that it was Faumui's stolen weapon.

The two were arrested without incident. It was not known last night what led the officers to the two suspects.

Police have determined that Faumui did not violate department standards of conduct for securing police equipment, a department spokesman said yesterday.

Faumui, a six-year Police Department veteran and a former professional football player, was walking to get gas after his car stalled at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday. While he was gone, thieves broke into his white 1996 Dodge Neon near the Honouliuli wastewater treatment plant.

Faumui, who is a patrol officer in Pearl City, had secured the items in his car before leaving, but thieves were able to locate his equipment, police said. Police declined to discuss where in the vehicle Faumui left his uniform and equipment.

Fujii said officers do have guns and components of their uniform stolen, but that it is very rare to lose a complete set.

The department is asking anyone with information about the theft to call 911.

The name embroidered above the right front pocket on the stolen uniform is "T. Faumui" and the officer's badge number is 2879, Fujii said.

Faumui, who starred at defensive end for Farrington High School and the University of Hawai'i, was drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers with the 122nd pick in the 1994 NFL draft. He played four years in the league before retiring.

Reach Curtis Lum at culum@honoluluadvertiser.com and Peter Boylan at pboylan@honoluluadvertiser.com.