Man wielding machete arrested for PPD after land dispute
Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — District Court Judge Elvis P. Patea has set bail at $200 for Apelu Fonoia, who was taken into custody last week following an incident in Ottoville where he is alleged to have gone to his neighbor’s home with a machete, and also challenged people in the neighborhood to a fight.
Fonoia, who made his initial appearance in court this week, is charged with misdemeanor public peace disturbance (PPD).
Assistant Attorney General Jason Mitchell says the government may file additional charges, as the police investigation continues on allegations of possible trespassing and making verbal threats.
If Fonoia is able to post bail, he is ordered not to bother his neighbor or attempt to set foot on his property. He is also not to make any direct or indirect contact with him.
Fonoia will appear in court again on Jan. 24, 2021.
According to court information, the PPD charge stems from a disagreement between Fonoia and his neighbor over the access road used by both families. Fonoia contends that his neighbor should not be using the access road because he and his children have spent a lot of time cleaning it.
But the neighbor claims that the access road is on their family property and therefore, Fonoia and his family should not be using the road at all. The neighbor contacted police for assistance after Fonoia allegedly came to his house and used a machete in a threatening manner, in addition to making verbal threats to an elderly man from his family.
It’s alleged that Fonoia’s actions came after a drinking session he had with friends at his home. When interviewed by police, Fonoia admitted to the alleged actions, saying he was just trying to prove a point to his neighbor, but he had no intention of hurting anyone.
He further stated to police that he would never do something to hurt or harm anybody.