ETI PONALI ENTERS GUILTY PLEA IN SEX CASE
Eti Ponali, who's been charged with sexually related crimes, will be sentenced next month after he entered into a plea agreement with the government. Ponali was initially charged with rape, sodomy, deviate sexual assault and sexual abuse first degree. In the plea agreement that was read in open court the defendant pleaded guilty to deviate sexual assault and sexual abuse first degree.
Associate Justice Lyle L Richmond accepted the plea deal. The defendant, who was denied bail due to his immigration status, is accused of having sex with a 15-year-old girl for five minutes.
According to the government’s case police met with the father of the 15 year old girl, who informed police that he heard the house phone ring at around 7:30a.m and his daughter answered the phone. Following that, his daughter went missing and so he called around looking for her. The father said his daughter came back to the house about an hour later and he saw hickies/love bites on her neck so he questioned her about it.
Court filings say, a woman from the church told the father that it was the defendant who had given his daughter love bites on her neck, so he then reported the incident to police.
The girl told police that she had sexual intercourse with the defendant in which he made love bites/hickies and her neck and also had sex with him for five minutes. The defendant during police questioning, admitted that he had had sexual intercourse with the 15-year-old girl.
DAVID BROWN GIVEN SEVEN YEARS PROBATION FOR BURGLARY CASE
Chief Justice Michael Kruse released David Brown from jail as part of his seven years probation sentence which was handed down last week. Brown was facing charges of first degree burglary, second degree assault and property damage, on allegations that he broke into a store in Ili’ili and attempted to stab the store owner.
In a plea deal with the government the defendant pled guilty to attempted burglary in the first degree -amended from first degree burglary- while the government moved to dismiss the remaining charges in this case. The Chief Justice accepted the plea deal.
The defendant apologized for his actions and pleaded with the court for a second chance. Brown also made a promise to the court that he will not repeat this behavior. His attorney Assistant Public Defender Mike White told the court that this was the defendant’s first time before the court, and he had been under bad influence by his friend. (Brown was charged along with Joseph Iakopo in this case.)
White then pleaded with the court to place the defendant on probation and this move was supported by Assistant Attorney General Camille Philippe.
Kruse sentenced the defendant to seven years in prison, however execution of sentencing was suspended and the defendant then placed on probation for a period of seven years under the condition that he serves 20 months.
However, Kruse ordered to stay the jail time under the conditions that the defendant be gainfully employed, attend GED courses for a high school diploma, and not consume alcohol or congregate with those who are consuming alcohol. He was also ordered to undergo 300 hours of community service.
According to the government’s case, in the early morning hours of Feb. 9, 2013, police received a call from a Chinese couple requesting assistance regarding a burglary taking place.
It’s alleged that when the police arrived at the scene they were told by a bystander that two men were inside the store but when the police entered the store, the pair took off on foot.
The Chinese couple informed the police that they were sleeping when they heard noises coming from the store, and when they opened the door, one of the suspects swung a knife at the man but missed and the knife landed on the door.
The man managed to get back into his bedroom, lock the door and seek assistance from the police and the landlord. According to the government’s case, the suspects gained entrance into the store by removing three wooden slabs on the side of the store and kicking in the kitchen door. It's alleged that two cleaver knives were missing from the kitchen and that after the burglary, one of the knives was identified to have been used during the burglary.
Police on the day in question drove around the Ili’ili area and came across two men who matched the description given by the Chinese couple. It's alleged that when police approached the pair, one took off on foot but they were able to apprehend Brown.
The defendant told the police that he had just met the suspect that took off on foot. Court filings say that Brown told the police that the suspect had come to his house in Nu’uuli telling him they were going to break into the store. He also stated that the other suspect planned the entire operation and they walked there from Nu’uuli, going through Petesa and Happy Valley, all the way to Ili’ili.
Brown said they got to Ili’ili and the other suspect went into the store and came out with a flashlight and then they both went into the store. It's alleged that the other suspect kicked in the kitchen door to enter the store and was trying to get through another door but they were unsuccessful. Brown claims it was the other suspect who held the knife.
THE NEW COMMENTS PROCESS
To make comments, you will need to register. You can register under your real name or use a 'screen' name. This way, people will be able to follow comments and make comments back and forth to each other. If you choose to use a 'screen name' no one will know your true identity. In either case, no email addresses will be available to anyone. It is an automated process. If you have questions, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
You currently are not logged in, please LOGIN to post comments.