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Felony assault charges expected over vicious beating in Lepuapua

The Attorney General’s office will be filing felony charges against two men and a juvenile accused of assaulting a man in the presence of his five year old daughter in Lepuapua, Sunday evening over a misunderstanding.

Jovian Toloa, Nisani Euini and the male juvenile made their initial appearance in the District Court. They are currently facing public peace disturbance and third degree assault charges, but the government anticipates felony counts as well.

According to the government’s case, the victim, who’s from Alofau, was in Faga’alu with his five year daughter shopping when he was approached by a woman who is a friend. She asked him if he could take her home to Malaeloa, and he agreed.

 It's alleged upon arrival in Lepuapua, the woman asked the victim to pull over to stop at a store.

Court filings state, the victim was surprised that the woman called out to him to leave when she saw her brother, cousin and her baby's father appear. The victim was allegedly then struck with a PVC pipe on the face by Toloa, which resulted in losing one of his teeth, and a swollen upper and lower lip.

It's alleged the victim called out to Toloa that his daughter was in the vehicle but the defendant was still hitting the victim with a pipe.

According to the government’s case, the victim managed to get a hold of the pipe and threw it in the back seat and tried to hold his daughter down for her safety.

Court filings state the victim told police his daughter was screaming out loud however the defendants did not stop beating him.

The government alleges, that Euini and the juvenile were punching the victim.The court filings further state that the juvenile got into the victim’s car on the passenger side and repeatedly punched the victim on his face and head.

The juvenile is alleged to have punched the rear window where the victim’s daughter was sitting, and the window shattered. Glass pieces were found in the daughter’s hair and clothes.

 It's alleged the woman got into the car and tried to stop Toloa (who’s the father of her baby) and her brother Euini and her juvenile cousin, but her brother pulled her hair and removed her from the car and continuously punched the victim on the face.

Court filings state, the victim attempted to turn the ignition on and when shifting gear it was in neutral and the juvenile jumped into the car and turned the vehicle off and continued punching the defendant, who then did not react and covered his face from the three men as they continued to assault him.

It's alleged the victim then pushed the juvenile from the car and turned the ignition back on, backed up and drove away when Toloa threw a beer bottle at the car, hitting the hood.

The victim then headed straight to the West Substation. Police took into evidence the PVC pipe and other evidence in this matter.

Toloa is being held on bail of $2,000 while the court has denied bail for the remaining two defendants. All three defendants are represented by the Public Defender’s office and they are scheduled to appear again this Wednesday on the status of their case.