Visitor Also Arrested Last Week
HONOLULU – A student attending college in Hawai‘i was arrested this morning by Special Agents from the Investigation Division of the Dept. of the Attorney General. 21-year-old Venasio Vaipulu was reported by a witness.
The witness told the special agents that on May 18, Vaipulu returned from spring break aware that he was under the State’s current 14-day mandatory traveler quarantine. The witness reports Vaipulu left his designated quarantine location nearly daily.
Investigators went to the address looking for Vaipulu to learn that he had moved without informing the state of his new residence. He was arrested on two charges: a self-quarantine violation and unsworn falsification to authority. He was booked, charged and his bail was set at $4,000.
Last Thursday, an 18-year-old Victorville, CA woman, who arrived on O‘ahu on May 17 was arrested on the same charges. She said she’d be staying with relatives for a month. Special Agents from the Investigation Division of the Department of the Attorney General report that Makayla Janay Thomas began posting her adventures on Instagram, several days after arriving at a Mililani home.
They say her social media postings showed her and local acquaintances going to various beaches, shopping centers, and local eateries. As with some previous quarantine violation cases, a local community group monitoring social media alerted the special agents.
Agents went to where Thomas was staying and arrested her on charges of violating the mandatory 14-day traveler quarantine and for unsworn falsification to authority. She was booked and charged, and her bail was set at $2,000.
Attorney General Clare Connors commented, “Pursuant to the Governor’s Act with Care order, we ask everyone moving about in our state to comply with the rules and directives in place to keep people safe. The travel self-quarantine order is based on public health guidance, and as we anticipate the reopening of interisland travel on June 16, it is important to note that the quarantine rules for all travelers from the mainland will remain in effect until further notice. We encourage all residents and visitors to respect the mandatory self-quarantine, as it has contributed to the low infection and death rates in Hawai‘i.”
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