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Juvenile arrested and charged in alleged machete attack

reporters@samoanews.com

A 15 year old juvenile has been arrested and charged after he allegedly struck a 32 year old man with a machete in Aoloau during the early hours of Friday morning. The juvenile is facing public peace disturbance a class B misdemeanor which carries a jail term up to six months, a fine $500 or both, and second degree assault, a class D felony punishable by up to five years in jail and a fine of up to $5,000.

The juvenile made his initial appearance in District Court last week Friday. According to the government’s case,  the police were at the hospital investigating a separate incident when they were notified about an assault case.

The police officers were informed that the victim sustained injuries on his right arm from a machete.

Court filings state that police officers approached the victim who was lying on the bed at LBJ with his right arm wrapped while an X-Ray specialist was trying to take photos of the victim’s injuries.

A male witness who was present with the victim at the hospital, told police he was in a drinking session with the victim.

The witness said during their drinking session, the victim looked around for his beer bottles and walked to where the defendant was and asked him about the two missing beer bottles.

It's alleged the defendant got into a verbal argument with the victim.

Court filings state the defendant left and came back with a machete and attempted to strike the victim on his chest, however the machete landed on the victim’s arm.

“The suspect was aiming for the victim’s upper body however he stepped in and pulled the victim away” say court filings.

The witness told police that if he hadn't been there, the victim would have died.

Police contacted the defendant to come with his mother to the police station for questioning, where the defendant told police that he was hanging out with his cousins when the victim, who was intoxicated, approached him and questioned him about missing beer bottles and cigarettes.

According to the government’s case, the defendant told the victim he had no knowledge about what the victim was talking about, and kept on swearing and yelling at him.

The defendant said he told the victim to go home because he was drunk but the victim repeatedly swore at him.

The government claims the defendant was upset because the victim swore at him in front of his house, so he went home, grabbed the machete, came back and struck the victim on the arm.

The defendant said his brother and cousin came and pulled him away. The defendant told the police that he struck the victim once and he aimed for the victim’s arm. Police have since confiscated the machete that was used in the alleged attack.

Court filings state the machete had blood stains which were documented, photographed and taken to the evidence room.

The defendant is represented by Assistant Public Defender Donna Clement while prosecuting this case is Assistant Attorney General Terrie Bullinger.

It’s unclear if the government will charge the juvenile as an adult in this case.



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