Driver Charged With Attempted Murder 03-06-01

PHONE: 961-2252
MARCH 6, 2001


A 32-year-old man was charged Monday (March 5, 2001) with attempted murder and other offenses after he rammed his truck into the patrol car of a Hilo police officer Sunday in downtown Hilo.

At 6:55 p.m., John Akio Daffron was charged with first-degree attempted murder, having an illegal place to keep firearms, second-degree promotion of a dangerous drug and possession of drug paraphernalia. He is being held in lieu of $53,250 bail.

Daffron was arrested Sunday after he ran his Toyota four-wheel drive vehicle over two curbs and a medial strip and ended on top of the patrol car of a Hilo patrol officer in downtown Hilo.

The incident began at 2:26 a.m. when Hilo Patrol Officer Jason Grouns, sitting in his patrol car in the parking lot near Cafe Pesto, observed suspicious activity at the Hilo bus terminal.

The officer saw a truck with oversized wheels at the terminal rev its engine and speed toward him. The vehicle climbed the curb of the bus terminal and sidewalk, crossed the Hamakua-bound lanes of Kamehameha Avenue, ran over the medial strip, crossed the Keaukaha-bound lanes of Kamehameha and struck the police car head-on, finally coming to a halt atop the car with Officer Grouns inside. The officer escaped injury in the collision, although his vehicle was extensively damaged.

When the suspect got out of his vehicle, a second officer arrested him. Inside Daffron’s vehicle, the arresting officer found a handgun, what appeared to be crystal methamphetamine, or “ice,” and a pipe.

Police said they have information that a car matching Daffron’s vehicle — a blue Toyota four-wheel drive lifted off the ground with oversized tires and having tinted windows — was trying to run cars off the road on Saturday and Sunday nights. They ask that anyone who was a victim of such an attempt to call Detective Richard Miyamoto of the Hilo Criminal Investigation Section at 961-2379 or the police non-emergency number at 935-3311.

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