Two police officers from the Victoria Police detachment were called into action this weekend, despite being over 4,000 kilometres away from their precinct.
Officers Cst. Hayley Swann and Cst. Brent Keddell were holidaying in Hawaii on December 20th — jogging around the city of Kona — when they heard a crime in progress.
Two women were being pursued by a 32-year-old man who had been exposing himself on the street. One woman had been caught by the man, and the other began throwing rocks at the assailant until they managed to get away for a brief time.
The women shouted for help and were quickly found by Kendell and Swann who heard the cries while out for a jog and workout.
After instructing a nearby man to call 911, Swann kept the women safe while Keddell moved the suspect away and stayed with him until police arrived.
According to West Hawaii Today, a local news outlet, the suspect is named Justin Michael Bardwell and was wanted for previous arson charges. He has since been charged with open lewdness, fourth-degree sexual assault, second-degree terroristic threatening and kidnapping
“I’m extremely proud of the actions taken by Cst. Swann and Cst. Keddell while off-duty and on a holiday,” Chief Del Manak said on January 2nd in a statement from Victoria Police. “Their dedication to protect others who need help is part of who they are, both as VicPD officers, and as people.”
Chief Manak also tweeted about the incident on Tuesday, January 1st, commending the officers.
“Always on-duty,” the Chief wrote.
ALWAYS ON-DUTY. Shout out to the 2 @vicpdcanada officers who intervened during a sex assault while on vacation in Kona, Hawaii. They ran to the women's screams while out for a run in a park. SUS charged with sex assault and kidnapping. #proudchief #ServiceBeforeSelf pic.twitter.com/uKwt3uzUeK
— Del Manak (@ChiefManak) January 2, 2020
Thanks to Laura Ruminski and West Hawaii Today for the permission to cite their story.