Officer Jerome Duarte was named the Kona Crime Prevention Committee’s “Officer of the Month” this week.

The committee recognized Duarte at a luncheon ceremony Wednesday.

He was honored for stopping an assault in progress while off duty.

The incident occurred March 15. Duarte, who was en route to the Kona police station prior to the start of his shift, stopped a man who was chasing and swinging an aluminum bat at a naked man on Kuakini Highway.

Duarte, who was in civilian clothes, announced he was a police officer and directed him to drop the bat and to get on the ground.

After the suspect complied, Duarte called for an ambulance for the victim, who had several large red marks on his back and legs. The suspect was arrested and charged with felony assault.

Duarte is eligible to become “Officer of the Year.”

 

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