Local Drug Organization Takedown Officer of the Year

LEFT TO RIGHT: LR: Officer Gaspar, Mayor Roth, Officer Nahale, Officer Won (photo courtesy of Hawaii Police Department)

  • Officer Justin Gaspar was named “2022 Police Officer of the Year” by the Kona Crime Prevention Committee on Thursday, August 25.
  • According to the police, Officer Gaspar was able to dismantle a local drug distribution organization, which was supplied by a Mexican cartel. He recovered 5 pounds of methamphetamine, over 7,000 fentanyl tablets and one kilogram of pure powdered fentanyl, all with a street value of over $1,000,000.

From the Hawaii Police Department:

The Kona Crime Prevention Committee named its “2022 Police Officer of the Year” on Thursday, August 25. This year, the honor went to Officer Justin Gaspar, who was named Officer of the Month for March 2022.

On November 1, 2021, Officer Gaspar of the Area II Vice Section initiated a narcotics investigation beginning with a vehicle interdiction that escalated into a major narcotics investigation. By developing and exploiting cooperating informants and defendants, working closely with his peers, internal experts and external agencies, Officer Gaspar was able to dismantle a local drug distribution organization, which was being supplied by a cartel Mexican. During his investigation, Constable Gaspar wrote over nine search warrants, which resulted in the recovery of 5 pounds of methamphetamine, over 7,000 fentanyl tablets and one kilogram of pure powdered fentanyl, all worth merchant over $1,000,000.

Officer Gaspar’s investigation identified a Big Island drug trafficking organization and prevented a large amount of narcotics from entering our island. The investigation resulted in the arrest of one of our island’s main narcotics suppliers and the cutting off of several other narcotics distributors. Additionally, through this investigation, Constable Gaspar was able to work with the Youth Aid Section to help identify a suspect in a child death.

A 12-year veteran of the department, Officer Gaspar is also a K9 handler and works with narcotic dog Boyke. Dedicated to narcotics recovery and the betterment of the Big Island community, Officer Gaspar strives to ensure that the Big Island is a safe place to live, visit and do business.

2020 Officer of the Year Wyatt Nahale and 2021 Officer of the Year Elijah Won were also honored at the recognition ceremony. Although both of these officers have already received their awards, neither has received the proper recognition due to the pandemic.

Each month, the Kona Crime Prevention Committee honors a Western Hawaii police officer as Officer of the Month. Officers are nominated by their supervisors in the various police districts and a winner is selected by the KCPC board. All officers selected for Officer of the Month are eligible to be selected as Kona Crime Prevention Committee Officer of the Year.

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