Moszkowicz selected as Big Island police chief


The Hawaii County Police Commission has selected Honolulu Police Maj. Benjamin Moszkowicz as the new top cop for Hawaii Island.

Commissioners voted 5-3 today during the panel’s monthly meeting in the County Council chambers in Hilo.


Commissioners voting to elect Moszkowicz were Dylan Andrion, Rod Quartararo, Rick Robinson, Pudding Lassiter and Vice Chairman Thomas Brown.

The three nay votes came from commissioners Denby Toci, Donna Springer and Anthony Sur. Chairman John Bertsch recused himself.

Moszkowicz was selected over three other finalists to succeed Paul Ferreira, who retired Aug. 31 after 40 years service in the Hawaii Police Department, six as chief. Kenneth Bugado Jr., Ferreira’s deputy chief, has since served as interim chief.

The three other finalists were: Kauai Police Capt. Paul Applegate, Hawaii Police Department Maj. Sherry Bird, and retired FBI agent Edward Ignacio.

The vote, which according to the agenda was to take place before the commission went into executive session to consider unrelated complaints by the public about officers, was postponed by motion until after the private session.

Five votes were needed to select the chief, and the commissioners’ first public vote Friday failed to do so, with Moszkowicz receiving votes from Andrion, Quatararo, Robinson and Brown.

Bird and Ignacio received two votes apiece, with Sur and Lassiter supporting Bird, while Toci and Springer voted for Ignacio.

Applegate, a Waiakea High School graduate, didn’t garner any votes from the commission.

Email John Burnett at

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