Police are investigating an escape from Hale Nani Correctional Facility that resulted in an arrest of an inmate.
At 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, 40-year-old Mary Lolita Santos of Mountain View was arrested for second-degree escape. She’s being held at the police cellblock while detectives investigate.
At about 10:45 a.m. Tuesday, police responded to Hale Nani, which is located off Route 11 in Hilo, after receiving a report that at about 9:40 a.m., a woman inmate scaled a fence and fled the minimum security facility on foot. After running along Route 11 and into the Puna-bound traffic lanes, she stopped a blue van and jumped into the passenger side window, police said.
State correctional officers were able to prevent the van from leaving until they took Santos into custody. The van then left the area.
Detectives want to interview the van’s driver, who’s described as an older Filipino man. He was operating a blue Honda Odyssey van that may have been a taxi, as it was described as having the letters “PUC” on its exterior.
Police ask anyone who may have witnessed this incident or may know the identity of the driver to call Detective Norbert Serrao at 961-2383 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Those who prefer anonymity may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300.