Man sentenced to 15 years for attempted child molesting
Loma Itutasi, 51, of Malaeloa was sentenced to 15 years in jail after pleading guilty to attempted child molesting.
During sentencing, Chief Justice Michael Kruse didn’t mince words when he urged the prosecutor to revisit the Sex Offenders Registry List and take it to the Legislature for their consideration. He noted that if the Registry is outdated, it should be revisited so members of the public are aware of sex offenders. He pointed out the mother of the 10-year-old victim in this case was not aware that Itutasi was a repeat sex offender.
Kruse referred to the Registry and said it appears the current statute is not well enforced and he appealed to the government to do something about it.
Itutasi was initially charged with kidnapping, sexual abuse first degree and attempted child molestation but in a plea agreement with the government, Itutasi pled guilty to attempted child molesting — a class D felony punishable by 5 to 15 years in jail — and the remaining charges were dismissed.
The defendant was sentenced to serve a straight sentence of 15 years and ordered to register as a sex offender. Assistant Attorney General Julie Pasquale who prosecuted the case recommended the defendant be sentenced to the maximum allowable under the law, as this is not the first time he has preyed on minor girls.
She pointed out that in 2005, the defendant was sentenced to five years in jail for sexual abuse involving an 11-year-old. He was released in 2009. Itutasi told the court that alcohol was a factor in this latest incident.
The defendant pleaded with the court for leniency and twice told the court, “I promise that I will not repeat this crime. I am sincerely remorseful and sorry for my wrongdoing.” Itutasi also promised that if given another chance, he will become a productive member of society and he would seek employment, and serve the church and village.
Assistant Public Defender Michael White told the court there should be counseling programs for sex offenders. He said sex addiction is a sickness which is not limited to Itutasi but others and counseling should be available for these people.
According to court filings, the victim was on the main road waiting for her mother when the defendant called her name. It’s alleged Itutasi “dragged her inside his house,” took her into his room and tried to molest her.
The victim said, when she asked Itutasi what he was doing, the defendant said, “just don’t tell anyone or anybody.”
It was when the victim’s grandmother called out for her that Itutasi told the girl to get out of his house and then “shoved her out of the room.” That’s how she got away.
The defendant told police he had been drinking the whole week, including that day.
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