Court Report


A 20-year old man is facing multiple charges on allegations that he robbed a store, took off with a case of beer and assaulted the store clerk in the process.  

Dean Niu of Mapusaga Fou is charged with robbery first degree, burglary first degree, assault third degree, resisting arrest, misdemeanor stealing, property damage third degree and underage drinking.

Niu is being held on bail of $10,000 with his preliminary examination later this week.

According to court fillings police officers received a call from a Chinese man requesting assistance, claiming he had been assaulted and three men took off with a case of beer from his store.

The government claims that Niu was trying to buy beer around 1:00 a.m., however, the victim refused, given that it’s illegal to sell alcohol after 10 p.m.

The government alleges that despite the storekeeper/ victim refusing the defendant, he insisted the victim sell beer to him and his companion. The victim then chased the defendant and another man, forcing them to leave the store.

According to the government a few minutes later the victim noticed the defendant appearing on a video surveillance camera, passing a case of beer to another male.

Police affidavit says the victim ran after the defendant to find out that the back room of the store had been broken into, and the defendant then punched him in the face and took off on foot. Police apprehended the defendant, but while the police officer was attempting to hand cuff the defendant he allegedly punched the officer in the face, and continued to resist arrest.

A witness near the incident gave police the names of the culprits involved. The government has also taken into evidence the video surveillance in this matter.

The robbery charge is a class A felony, punishable from 10 to 30 years or life imprisonment; burglary, a class B felony is punishable from five to 15 years in jail; assault third degree, a class A misdemeanor, is punishable to one year on jail, a fine of up to $1,000 or both; resisting arrest, a class D felony, punishable up to five years in jail, a fine of $5,000 or both; misdemeanor stealing, a class A misdemeanor that carries a jail term of up to one year a fine of up to $1,000 or both; property damage, a class B misdemeanor punishable up to six months in jail, a fine of $500 or both; and underage drinking, a class B misdemeanor punishable up to six months in jail, a fine of up to $500 or both.

The defendant is represented by Assistant Public Defender Karen Shelley, while prosecuting is Assistant Attorney General Blake Hanley.


Chief Justice Michael Kruse has released Pene Wells, one of the defendants charged in connection with the assault of a visiting rugby referee last year. Wells was released from jail on Monday.

Kruse had sentenced Wells to five years in jail, however execution of sentence was suspended, and he was placed on five year’s probation under the condition that he serve 20 months in jail.

Wells had already been in jail for more than ten months.

The Chief Justice stayed the remaining ten months, given the defendant’s good behavior. Kruse also ordered Wells to pay a $2,000 fine and $1,000 restitution for the victim’s medical bills.

Wells was initially charged with first degree assault, however in a plea deal with the government, he pled guilty to second degree assault.

During the defendant’s plea hearing, he admitted in court that during a rugby game on July 23, he kicked the victim, who was visiting from Samoa, in the face while the victim was on the ground.

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