WAILUKU - Family members said Marshall Langford didn't have a gun, as police alleged, and was reaching for a cellphone when he was fatally shot by a police officer in a Kihei parking lot Tuesday morning.
"My son didn't have a gun.
He didn't," Kahakuloa resident Genevieve Langford said Wednesday morning. "They took his life.
Marshall “Mosi” Langford is shown with his wife, Shelly, in a photo taken in 2010. He died Tuesday morning after being shot by a police officer while driving a stolen car in the parking lot of the Mana Kai Maui Resort. Members of his family said Wednesday that he didn’t have a gun, as police have alleged.
"They could have Tasered him or shoot the tires, do something like that. They're trained. They didn't have to shoot. There was other ways and means."
The 31-year-old Langford was pronounced dead at the scene after the shooting at about 11:20 a.m. Tuesday in the parking lot of the Mana Kai Maui Resort.
Police said Langford was trying to flee in a stolen car and allegedly had pulled out a handgun that he pointed at one of the officers on scene when the officer fired his weapon at the suspect.
Witnesses reported hearing three shots and seeing three police officers around a blue 2010 Chevrolet Impala. The car, which hit a parked pickup truck, had been reported stolen from Alamo Rent A Car's base yard at Kahului Airport.
Langford was in the car when he was shot, a witness said, and afterward was pulled out of the vehicle by police.
The 18-year police veteran who shot Langford was placed on administrative leave, which is standard police procedure after officer-involved shootings. Police said Wednesday that they were not releasing the officer's name.
After the shooting, police blocked off the parking lot and evacuated the hotel for more than three hours, searching from room to room for a second suspect who had been with Langford. The suspect, a 28-year-old Wailuku man, turned himself in to police at about 6:40 p.m. Tuesday, police said. He was being held at the Wailuku Police Station on Wednesday.
Police were reportedly searching the stolen vehicle Wednesday but as of Wednesday evening had not responded to requests for additional information about the search or other details about the shooting.
Langford, who was known to family and friends as "Mosi," had been a passenger when the 28-year-old man drove the car to the resort, where one of their friends works, said Langford's younger brother, Marcus Langford. He said the 28-year-old went into the store to buy Marshall Langford something to drink while Langford moved the car from the front of the store where they had pulled up.
Genevieve Langford said her son-in-law received a phone message from Langford at the time of the shooting.
"All my son-in-law heard was three shots on the phone," she said. "I don't know what he was trying to tell my son-in-law, but he nevah have time because they shot him already.
"They nevah give my son a chance to even talk. He had his phone, and they shot him."
She said she was at work Tuesday when her youngest daughter called to say that her son had been shot. She and other family members first went to the hospital, thinking Langford would be taken there.
After learning that wasn't the case, family members went to the Mana Kai, where police were investigating and keeping people out of the parking lot.
"I went kind of outraged because that was my son," she said.
She said police wouldn't let family members see Marshall Langford's body at the scene as the investigation was ongoing.
"I'm looking at it as they may be planting evidence against my son because they're authorized to do anything," she said. "I don't think that was right."
She said family members then were told to go to the morgue. At the morgue, Genevieve Langford said that she was allowed only to see her son's body from behind glass.
"I wanted to hold him," she said. "I couldn't hold him."
She said police told family members that they couldn't touch his body because of possible gunshot evidence and would have to wait until an autopsy was done.
She disputed police allegations that Langford was fleeing.
"I know my son. He wouldn't run," she said. "I know my son is on drugs, but this had nothing to do with drugs.
"For a stolen car, he got shot. Whether it was stolen or not, they didn't have to shoot him."
Langford said that she is considering suing the Police Department.
"They can't take my son's life just like that and think I not going do nothing," she said.
She said her son, the fourth of her six children, moved to Maui from Oahu when he was in the 9th grade and attended Baldwin High School before dropping out. He had been a mason, although he hadn't worked recently, family members said.
"He got so caught up in the drug world, and that's sad," Genevieve Langford said. "You can only love them, and you can only pray for them. He still was a good kid, even if he was on drugs."
Langford and his wife, Shelly, have a 10-year-old son, Ezekiel.
"She's hurting because she lost him, and my grandson don't have a father," Genevieve Langford said.
According to the Hawaii Criminal Justice Data Center, Marshall Langford has 18 criminal convictions, including five for unauthorized entry into a motor vehicle, as well as second-degree theft, third-degree promotion of a dangerous drug and possessing drug paraphernalia. Some of the charges stem from car break-ins at Nakalele Point in 2006.
In 2006, after he was sentenced to a five-year prison term for the felony convictions, the parole board set his minimum term at four years, said Tommy Johnson, administrator of the Hawaii Paroling Authority. He said Langford was twice denied parole and served the entire five-year term before being released from prison on May 24, 2011.
He was still incarcerated when he was arraigned in February 2011 in 2nd Circuit Court on charges of first-degree promotion of prison contraband and possessing drug paraphernalia, but the charges - stemming from a December 2009 incident - were dismissed in April 2011, the month before his release from prison, court records show.
"My brother wasn't a bad person," said Brandy Kinoshita. "He just made bad choices."
Marcus Langford said that he looked up to his brother. "I was his tail when we were smaller," he said. "I was always following, did whatever he did. We had the same friends."
Genevieve Langford remembered her son's "smiles, his laughter."
"He was quiet, observing," she said. "But he brought laughter and love."
She said her son didn't need to steal.
"His wife love him so much that she gave him anything he wanted," she said. "When he nevah come home, she goes looking for him and bring him food, give him money. She took care my son.
"He's a loving son. He did make bad choices. We all do in our life. My son wasn't perfect, but he didn't have to die that way."
Marshall Langford is also survived by his father, Milo Langford; other brother Milo Keoni Langford; and other sisters Sangria Salgado, Lacy Langford and Tracy Kahanaoi.
* Lila Fujimoto can be reached at email@example.com.