Makua Seaside Standoff: Residents Say They Are Being Run Off By A Man Tenting Out

Makua Seaside Standoff: Residents Say They Are Being Run Off By A Man Tenting Out

A Makaha man has been blocking public entry to Makua Seaside for the previous eight months, together with threatening some folks with violence. 

However metropolis and state authorities haven’t compelled Samson Souza and his household to depart the West Oahu seaside though it’s unlawful in Hawaii to hinder entry to a public seaside. 

Police charged him in November with harassment and terroristic threatening for threatening to bodily hurt a girl. Now authorities are ready to see if he exhibits up in court docket this week on the costs.

Officers say after they contacted Souza at Makua Seaside, he put his cellphone as much as report them on his social media and mentioned he informed them the folks had been foreigners bothering the dolphins.

Native residents have been speaking about him on social media for months.

“He has no proper to manage a public seaside,” Makaha resident Emily Silge informed Civil Beat. She had an altercation with Souza in early November.

“Some folks, together with me, are fearful that he’ll proceed to threaten violence on locals and guests. He has threatened locals who he thinks are haoles, so him leaving that space would make the vitality optimistic once more.”

Samson and Kawehionalani Souza stand near tents and vehicles near the entrance to Makua Beach Park. The Souza'a have been warning visitors that it is illegal to harass dolphins offshore.
Samson and his spouse, Kawehionalani Souza, stand  close to the doorway to Makua Seaside. Residents within the space mentioned Souza has been blocking entry to the seaside and threatening them. Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2022

Residents say they’re afraid to return to Makua Seaside after current encounters with Souza, who threatened bodily violence and property injury like slashing their tires, in addition to calling out racial slurs. Souza has not too long ago tried to dam entry to movie producers on the seaside.

Silge described her encounter with Souza at Makua Seaside.

She bought right into a heated argument with Souza after she mentioned she noticed him body-blocking two males from getting into the seaside. When she bought out of her automotive, Silge informed Souza he couldn’t threaten folks. She mentioned he instantly pulled out his cellphone to report her and commenced to yell at her.

“That’s when issues escalated,” Silge mentioned. “He mentioned that no regulation might cease him as a result of this isn’t America after which he informed me that he was going to bash my head in.”

Silge added that he began calling her “fucking stink haole” and telling her she was entitled whereas recording her on reside video. Silge additionally mentioned the person Souza was blocking from the seaside had a panic assault whereas she was arguing with Souza. 

“If I didn’t pull up, I’m fairly certain he would have hit him,” Silge mentioned.

Silge, who lived in Makaha for 10 years, has been coming to Makua Seaside for free-diving, seaside cleanups and taking her daughter to the tide pool each weekend. However, for the reason that encounter, Silge mentioned she hasn’t returned.

Makua Seaside, situated between Makaha and Kaena Level, is thought for its crystal clear water, fishing actions, tide swimming pools, seaside breaks and dolphins.

Emily Silge is one resident who encountered Samson Souza at Makua Seaside. David Croxford/Civil Beat/2022

Waikiki resident Noelle Ball mentioned she usually visits Makua Seaside, including it’s certainly one of her favourite seashores on Oahu due to its quiet and peaceable nature. In mid-October, Ball mentioned she took her good friend to Makua Seaside whereas exhibiting her across the island.

As quickly as Ball and her good friend bought out of their automotive, she mentioned Souza was yelling at them throughout the parking zone. At first, Ball mentioned she thought Souza was speaking to another person or thought he was involved that she and her good friend had been going to swim within the uneven waves.

As quickly as Ball informed Souza that she was exhibiting her good friend round, she mentioned Souza began recording her whereas telling her to get off his land and referred to as her “fucking haole” and “soiled haole.”

Ball mentioned she was afraid to cause with him and didn’t need the state of affairs to escalate.

“It was simply me and my girlfriend. And being a woman is horrifying to have a person that large cussing and yelling at you,” Ball mentioned. “I personally felt confused and threatened. He simply stored saying, ‘Don’t depart your automotive.’ It was a nuance of one thing dangerous will occur in the event you step foot on that seaside.”

Jen Schindler mentioned Souza and his spouse have threatened to bodily take away her and her household from Makua Seaside by “knocking us out.” She mentioned it was the identical story when she tried to return.

“I’ve lived right here for a few years,” Schindler mentioned in an electronic mail. “We all the time introduced out what we took in. By no means left a multitude. Additionally such a peaceable time with the children after a tough week at work. Now we are able to’t even go there.”

Discuss of the encounters with Souza have been spreading on social media.

The username “thehungryhungryhawaiian” posted a number of movies of Souza’s altercations on Instagram. Many of the movies confirmed him and the residents yelling backwards and forwards.

One video had an area man with the username “madeinkaimuki” telling Souza to point out compassion for folks visiting Hawaii.

“That is my dwelling, and I welcome them to my dwelling,” the native man mentioned within the Instagram video.

“I’m not welcoming them to my dwelling,” Souza responded. “It’s not aloha. You bringing these folks to use our place, after which they convey their folks over right here. Don’t fucking act dumb. I’ll carry my nephews over right here.”

Sign located at Makua Beach Park warning swimmers about staying 50-yards away from dolphins offshore.
An indication at Makua Seaside warns swimmers about staying 50 yards away from the dolphins. Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2022

A Civil Beat reporter and photographer talked with Souza on the seaside final week. Souza mentioned he’s not making an attempt to kick anybody off the seaside. As a substitute, he mentioned he’s defending the dolphins from industrial boats, kayak tour operators, and beachgoers coming to geotag the realm.

“I’m not making an attempt to kick anyone out of this seaside,” he mentioned. “In the event you come over right here with dangerous intentions like swimming with the dolphins or taking footage of our ice field, then we’ve got to carry folks accountable.” Souza refers back to the ocean as an icebox.

Makua Seaside is a resting place for Hawaii’s spinner dolphins, which has been a vacation spot for beachgoers and boat excursions for many years. The dolphins had turn out to be a preferred vacationer attraction and prompted residents to lift issues that the inflow of holiday makers was getting out of hand.

An indication on the entrance to the seaside cites federal regulation stating that nobody is allowed inside 50 yards of the dolphins, noting that such exercise is dangerous to their well being. Thus far, nobody has been cited for coming inside 50 yards of the dolphins, in accordance with the state Division of Land and Pure Sources.

Nevertheless, Souza mentioned he’s seen many individuals ignoring that signal. And though Souza and his spouse, Kawehionalani, have warned guests about swimming with the dolphins, they mentioned folks do it anyway. 

Souza mentioned he remembered the altercation with Silge and mentioned he’d seen two beachgoers with a paddle board and he requested them in the event that they had been going to swim with the dolphins. Based on Souza, the beachgoers mentioned they didn’t care in the event that they had been going close to the dolphins, so he requested them to depart. However they didn’t, and that’s when, Souza mentioned, Silge got here out of her automotive yelling at him.

Souza’s spouse, Kawehionalani, mentioned Silge escalated the state of affairs as a result of she got here out of her automotive to yell at them.

“I feel it might have been communicated higher,” Kawehionalani Souza mentioned. “If she didn’t come off that manner, we might have communicated along with her, however we didn’t even have the prospect.”

Souza informed Civil Beat he’s staying put at Makua Seaside.

Samson Souza's tent located near the locked gate at Makua Beach Park.
Samson Souza stays within the Makua Seaside parking zone along with his spouse and a number of other of his pals. Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2022

He at present has pending costs for harassment and second-degree terroristic threats, in accordance with court docket paperwork. He has been ordered to seem in court docket on Wednesday, or a warrant shall be issued for his arrest.

Courtroom paperwork present that Souza was charged on Nov. 11 for harassment and threatening to bodily hurt a girl. Honolulu prosecutors say extra particulars of his case received’t be launched till later.

Some residents say they’re annoyed about how the state of affairs is being dealt with. 

Makua Seaside is a state seaside managed by the Division of Land of Pure Sources.

In Hawaii, it’s unlawful to dam entry to a public seaside. Nevertheless, Souza hasn’t been charged for violating that regulation or cited by DLNR.

“Mr. Souza has no citations from DOCARE. It doesn’t seem Mr. Souza is on state lands; due to this fact, jurisdiction falls underneath HPD,” DLNR spokesperson Madison Rice mentioned in an electronic mail.

When requested if Souza had damaged the general public seaside entry regulation, DLNR didn’t reply.

However HPD spokesperson Michelle Yu mentioned the police division can solely cope with Souza’s harassment and terroristic threatening costs.

“Makua Seaside Park is a state park, not a metropolis park,” Yu mentioned in an electronic mail. “The park has a number of facet entry roads and a few cattle gates, and these are maintained by the DLNR. When the DLNR says that ‘jurisdiction falls underneath HPD,’ they could be referring to the 2 pending instances because the DLNR doesn’t conduct harassment or terroristic threatening investigations.”

Residents who’re involved concerning the state of affairs shared copies of an electronic mail alternate they’d acquired between HPD Sgt. Fumikazu Muraoka and metropolis officers after officers checked on Souza on Nov. 15. 

Souza recorded the assembly with officers, telling them that the folks he informed to depart had been foreigners bothering the dolphins and that no U.S. legal guidelines apply to him.

“There have been a number of seaside guests current after we arrived, so it appears he modified his tune a bit since final week,” Muraoka mentioned within the electronic mail. “It appears some days he’s OK, however others extra aggressive based mostly on phrase from those that have spoken to him within the current previous.”

“He said he didn’t obtain any discover of a court docket look but, unsure if notification shall be within the close to future or if he’s simply denying it,” Muraoka continued.

Richard Wallsgrove, assistant professor on the College of Hawaii William S. Richardson Faculty of Regulation, mentioned there’s a penalty for obstructing entry to a state park, which is public.

“It sounds to me like this is a matter that’s so loaded with an entire bunch of historic and cultural nuance,” Wallsgrove mentioned. “I see that very same query about jurisdiction as a result of I feel counties are usually liable for seaside entry points, however that seaside particularly and the parking of that seaside is a state park.” 

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