Maui County prosecutors have decided not to pursue charges against an armed guard at the Oahu Community Correctional Center who fatally shot an escaping detainee in March.

The jail guard, whose name has not been released, was under investigation for murder by the Honolulu Police Department after he shot Maurice Arrisgado Jr., the escaped detainee, in the back. The case was referred to the Maui County Prosecuting Attorney to avoid possible conflicts of interest.

OCCC Oahu Community Correctional Center razor wire.
No charges will be filed against a guard who shot a prisoner escaping from the Oahu Community Correctional Center Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Michael Kagami, a deputy prosecuting attorney on Maui, said he decided not to pursue charges against the guard, citing Hawaii’s law that allows law enforcement to use deadly force against people escaping from prison or jail.

Police apprehended Arrisgado in February for a 2016 robbery case. He tried to stab the officers with a knife before being detained.

On March 1, Arrisgado tried to escape from OCCC after a court appearance. He managed to run out of the intake center and through the sally port gates before heading down side streets in Kalihi.

He was shot in the back outside St. Anthony church.

Kagami said Arrisgado’s family, including Maurice Arrisgado, a former Honolulu deputy prosecutor, was notified of the decision not to press charges.

A spokeswoman for the Department of Public Safety, which runs the jail, said it is still pursuing an internal investigation and has not determined what action it will take, if any.

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