10-18-23 Police Investigating Possible Drowning in Kona

Hawai‘i Police Department
Kona Patrol
Officer Mara Gaertner
Phone: (808) 326-4646, ext. 253
Report No.: 23-098789

Media Release

Hawai‘i Island police are investigating a possible drowning involving a 53-year-old man from Colorado that occurred on Tuesday afternoon, October 17, 2023, at a beach in Kona. Police have identified the victim as Jeffrey Jewers, of Aurora, Colorado.

On Tuesday at 5:29 p.m., officers responded to a report of a distressed swimmer in the 75-6000 block of Ali‘i Drive. Upon arrival, officers learned that Jewers was walking along a rocky area the shoreline when a large wave struck him. The force of the wave knocked Jewers down onto the rocks, where he was subsequently pulled into the ocean. Witnesses saw Jewers  attempting to climb out of the ocean when he was struck by a second large wave, pulling him away from the shoreline. 

Jewers was last observed in the water a 1/2 mile offshore. Responding Hawai‘i Fire Department personnel were able to locate Jewers, who appeared lifeless. He was taken to the Kona Community Hospital where he was pronounced dead at 6:40 p.m.

Police have initiated a coroner’s inquest investigation and have ordered an autopsy to determine the exact cause of death.

Police ask anyone who may have witnessed this incident to contact Officer Mara Gaertner of Kona Patrol at (808) 326-4646, ext. 253, or e-mail Mara.Gaertner@Hawaiicounty.gov.

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