Reports are that a Hawaii man had been detained after shooting at two cars stopped in traffic, and then continuing on an early Friday morning freeway shooting rampage that has now left one woman dead, another woman in critical condition and a man in serious condition, Honolulu police have said this evening.
The shootings, which include shots fired at police, spanned over a wide area of Oahu and iappeared to be random, with no connection between the suspect and the victims, said Maj. Richard Robinson, head of the police Criminal Investigations Division. He praised the officers courage in dealing with the man, who was obviously disturbed mentally.
Toby Stangel of Haleiwa got out of his car at 12:43 a.m., walked up to vehicles stopped in an intersection and opened fire, he was not wearing any kind of body armour.
A 54-year-old woman was shot multiple times — workers at a nearby supermarket told the Honolulu Star Advertiser they heard five shots. She was taken to a Honolulu hospital in critical condition where she was pronounced dead, Honolulu police spokeswoman Michelle Yu said.
Stangel, 28, opened fired again about 10 minutes later on the H-1 freeway, the major artery in Honolulu, shooting and critically injuring a 24-year-old woman, police said. The younger woman’s sister identified her as Emelou Asuncion and told the newspaper she was shot twice in the shoulder while driving to work.
There have been rumours that he knew one of the intended vicims and had recently had a falling out with part of his family. It has been reported that his girlfriend left him in the past week, but this had happened before.
A man driving past was also shot and was in serious condition.
Stangel then continued west where he spotted and fired at officers conducting a traffic stop on the Moanalua Freeway. The officers were uninjured, they were wearing body armour but this does not cover head or ligament areas.
They were able to overpower and arrest Stangel on suspicion of several counts of attempted murder after he was spotted in his stopped BMW at about 1 a.m. on the freeway in Aiea. He now faces murder charges. The death toll stand at 1 at the moment but is expected to rise. Police are still determining what happened in the time before he was first spotted shooting at things by members of the public who allerted the police.
The ordeal closed parts of the freeway for nearly six hours. Police are questioning the man and have called in a psychiatrist to assess him. He will be kept in jail until he can appear in court which will probably be over the next few days.