HawaiiNewNow May 16, 2014
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) – A Hawaii News Now investigation obtained dramatic video of a mentally ill homeless woman just moments before police shot her with a gun and Taser five years ago, a case that resulted in an excessive force ruling against the city and raises questions about how police handle the mentally ill on the streets.
The video from a police officer’s Taser gun, shows Yvonne Arsisto backing away from at least three police officers at the corner of King Street and Kalakaua Avenue after midnight on April 3, 2009.
The officers told their superiors that she threatened them with two weapons.
“A metal rod about 14 inches long and metal pick about 18 inches long, she lunged at them, one officer Tased her, and the other officer shot her,” then-HPD Major Frank Fujii told reporters after the shooting on April 3, 2009.
The video does not show what happened in the seconds immediately before the shooting but it does show the officers shocking her with a Taser and shooting her with a gun in the stomach.
Arsisto spent three weeks in the hospital recovering from her wounds.
“Clearly mentally ill, just shot down on the street,” said attorney Michael Green filed an excessive force lawsuit on Arsisto’s behalf against the city.
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