Court Report

ausage@samoanews.com

SECRET “AFFAIR” LEADS TO ASSAULT   

A 41-year-old man from Tafuna who was arrested last week for allegedly assaulting his wife told police that a secret affair between his wife and a neighbor caused him to beat up the mother of his 2 young children.

The matter was reported to police by a neighbor who heard the woman’s screams for help. The victim managed to escape from her house and she ran to the neighbor's home just as a police unit arrived.

The victim told police that her husband choked her after he repeatedly hit her face with his fists, resulting in bruises to her face and body.

The defendant was released on his own recognizance with certain conditions that include staying away from his wife and two children, and finding somewhere to stay.

His next court appearance is set for Dec. 20th.

FETOAI FALANIKO

A woman and boy from Pago Pago were injured Tuesday evening after a vehicle struck them. Samoa News understands the woman sustained serious head injuries while the boy’s injuries were minor.

Both were taken to the LBJ hospital where the woman was rushed to the ICU and as of yesterday morning, she was still in critical condition.

Eyewitnesses told police the incident started when the victim’s husband asked Fetoai Falaniko to move his car from blocking the entrance to their house; and while the husband was talking to another man, Falaniko allegedly assaulted him from behind.

The defendant then jumped into his vehicle and sped away, allegedly striking the victim who was standing on the side of the road.

Police officers responded to call for assistance and took two individuals, including Falaniko, in for questioning.

Falaniko made his initial appearance yesterday morning before District Court Judge, Fiti Sunia.

 Prosecutor, Asst. AG Gillian Sandler told the Court the government would be filing additional charges against the defendant, once police complete their investigation.

Sunia set Falaniko’s bail at $3,000.

During court proceedings yesterday, Falaniko’s attorney, Ryan Nelson of the Public Defender’s Office, asked for bail to be reduced to $500, or otherwise, release his client on his own recognizance. Nelson argued that the Court should consider the fact that his client is being charged with a single misdemeanor count.

Sandler opposed the defense motion for a reduction in bail, saying the victim sustained severe head injuries and the government is looking at filing additional charges against the defendant. She argued that bail should remain at $3,000 and Sunia agreed, saying the bond must be in the form of cash.

If Falaniko is able to post bond, conditions of his release include no direct or indirect contact with the government's witnesses, especially the victims in this case. He’s to remain drug and alcohol free, and he is not permitted to drive for any reason.

SIO OLOMALI’I

A bus driver who was stopped by police for a traffic violation has been slapped with a felony, after cops allegedly found in his possession, a glass pipe with methamphetamine inside.

Sio Olomalii made his initial appearance before District Court Judge, Fiti Sunia last week, where he waived his right to a preliminary examination. His case is now bound over to the High Court for further proceedings.

The 31-year-old bus driver from Samoa has admitted to police that the glass pipe they found belonged to him.

Olomali’i remains in custody until he is able to post a $5,000 surety bond.

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