7-13-21 Police Investigate Possible Drowning in Ka‘ū

Hawai‘i Police Department
Ka‘ū Patrol Division
Sergeant Chris Correia
Phone: (808) 939-2520
Report No.: 21-056254

Media Release

Hawai‘i Island police are investigating a possible drowning incident that occurred in the Kaʻū district.

On Friday, July 9, 2021, at 10:56 p.m., police, Hawai`i Fire Department, and US Coast Guard personnel responded to a report of a 42-year-old man who fell into the ocean while fishing along the remote shoreline at the end of the Road to the Sea.

Bystanders and family members entered the water and attempted to rescue the victim.  Both the victim and another 39 year-old man who entered the water to assist were subsequently swept further out into the ocean by the current. Three others who attempted the rescue made it safely back to shore.

At 3:24 a.m. on Saturday, July 10, Coast Guard helicopter personnel located both men unresponsive in the ocean. They were flown to the Miloli‘i boat ramp, before being taken to Kona Community Hospital where they were pronounced dead at 7:05 a.m.

The victims were identified as 42-year-old Patrick Fuga of Hōloaloa and 39-year-old Petelo “Lo” Finau, of Kailua-Kona.

Police have opened a coroner’s inquest investigation in connection with this incident and have ordered an autopsy to determine the cause of death.

Anyone who may have information relative to this incident is asked to call the department’s non-emergency number at (808) 935-3311, or Officer Rodney Kekaualua Jr. in the Kaʻū patrol division at (808) 939-2520.

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