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Serial PPD defendant released from TCF after 30 days

 District Court Judge Fiti Sunia

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — A young man who spent 30 days behind bars for disturbing the peace in Nuuuli on Sept. 20, 2018 was released from confinement last week, after District Court Judge Fiti Sunia sentenced him to time served at the Territorial Correctional Facility (TCF).

The government claims that on the night of Sept. 20, 2018 around 10.45 p.m, Henry Sosaiete disturbed the peace by yelling out profanities while he was heavily intoxicated, which caused many families to wake up and run to the road to see what was happening.

The government further claimed that the defendant also engaged in some threatening behavior when some of the village people tried to calm him down.

Sosaiete pled guilty to peace disturbance (PPD), a class B misdemeanor. In return for his guilty plea, the government agreed to dismiss the remaining charges against the defendant. Sosaiete was arrested on the night of incident and spent 30 days in TCF after he was unable to post his cash bond of $400.

Sosaiete appeared in District Court last week for sentencing. He was represented by Assistant Public Defender Anna Wells, while prosecuting the case was Assistant Attorney General Laura Garvey of the Attorney General’s office.

The court sentenced Sosaiete to a period of probation of 12 months subject to the following conditions — that he pay a fine of $135, stay away from consuming alcohol or possession of illegal drugs, and remain law abiding and visit the probation office every month. His probation review will be on Jan 22, 2019.

“Sosaiete, if you violate any conditions of your probation, the court will order you to serve the 84 days of detention that was deferred from your previous cases. It’s time for you to stop coming to court and seeing me, except for your probation review in January of next year. You’re a grown man and you need to make good decisions. Don’t let alcohol control your life,” Sunia warned the defendant.

According to court records, Sosaiete has a criminal record in District Court. In 2014, he was convicted of PPD and trespassing. Again in 2016, he was also convicted of PPD, 3rd degree assault and property damage.