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President of Hawaii’s statewide police union retiring

March 2, 2018

FILE - In this Jan. 18, 2017 file photo, Honolulu Police Sgt. Tenari Maafala, who is president of Hawaii's police union, speaks at a Honolulu Police Commission meeting as Acting Chief Cary Okimotoleft, and commissioners look on. Maafala told The Associated Press Thursday, March 1, 2018 he's retiring next month from the Honolulu Police Department after nearly 30 years on the force. He'll also step down as president of the State of Hawaii Organization of Police Officers. (AP Photo/Jennifer Sinco Kelleher, File)

HONOLULU (AP) — The president of Hawaii’s police union is retiring.

Sgt. Tenari Maafala told The Associated Press Thursday he’s retiring next month from the Honolulu Police Department. He’ll also step down as president of the State of Hawaii Organization of Police Officers.

Maafala’s retirement after nearly 30 years on the force comes after the department’s new chief reassigned him and other union leaders. Maafala had been in a unit that provides peer support and counseling for officers, their families and civilian staff members experiencing trauma and grief. He was reassigned to patrol Waikiki.

Maafala says his retirement has nothing to do with the reassignment.

The union filed a complaint that says the department can’t arbitrarily reassign a union official without cause.

Maafala has been president of the union for 18 years.

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