Hawai´i Man Sentenced For Assaulting Federal Officer
United States District Judge Derrick K. Watson sentenced Gary M. Griffith, 31, of Honolulu, Hawai´i, today for one count of assault on a federal law enforcement officer, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 111(a)(1). Griffith will serve 46 months imprisonment, with three years of supervised release to follow.
Judith A. Philips, Acting U.S. Attorney for the District of Hawai´i, stated that according to court documents and information presented in court, on Sept. 13, 2019, the defendant was driving a rental car on Nimitz Highway in the opposite direction of traffic when he came upon a Deputy U.S. Marshal operating his duty vehicle.
The two vehicles stopped opposite each other with Griffith’s vehicle pointed in the wrong direction. After making a shooting motion with his hand in the direction of the Deputy, Griffith crossed the median and began driving in the correct direction. As the Deputy watched in his rear view mirror, Griffith once again crossed the median and drove opposite traffic, the judge continued.
The Deputy turned his vehicle around and pursued with blue lights illuminated, reporting Griffith to the Honolulu Police Department. During an extended pursuit, Griffith purposely rammed his rental car into the Deputy’s vehicle, and also struck and damaged vehicles belonging to bystanders. After being struck, the Deputy continued the pursuit and eventually apprehended Griffith, who was then arrested by HPD.
“As the Court observed during the sentencing hearing, the defendant’s crime was ‘egregious.’ The defendant put dozens of lives at risk, including those of the Deputy U.S. Marshal and innocent bystanders in cars and on foot. That no one was seriously hurt or killed was pure luck,” stated Acting U.S. Attorney Philips.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Honolulu Police Department with assistance from the Department of the Prosecuting Attorney of the City and County of Honolulu. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Craig S. Nolan.