Two PPDs in court
Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — A man who was arrested for disturbing the public peace and later found to be in possession of drugs has entered into a plea agreement with the government.
Fiti Sale appeared in court two weeks ago for a pretrial conference.
He was initially charged with unlawful possession of marijuana, a felony, and two misdemeanors: third degree assault and public peace disturbance. But under a plea agreement, accepted by the court, Sale pled guilty to the amended, lesser charge of unlawful possession of marijuana, a class D felony that carries a sentence of up to 5 years in jail, a fine of up to $5,000 or both.
Sale who is set to be sentenced Apr. 28th, admits that on the evening of June. 21, 2020 at his home in Tafetai, he had on him two hand rolled marijuana joints when police arrested him for disturbing the public peace.
According to terms of the plea agreement, when cops arrived at the scene, Sale was yelling profanities at his neighbor, with a beer bottle in hand. During a body search, police found two hand rolled marijuana cigarettes on him. Sale admitted that the joints belonged to him, and he bought them from a man named “Willie” in Vaitogi.
Aivao Mani, a probationer convicted of public peace disturbance, has been sentenced to 30 days in jail.
“This is how things work out in this courtroom,” the court told the defendant. “Once you violate a condition of your probation, we’re no longer talking about counseling; we’re talking about jail terms, and that’s what you get for disobeying the court’s order.”
“So, if you want to try the court again, go ahead because your next conviction will be higher than this one,” the court warned the defendant.
The defendant was placed on probation for 12 months following a public peace disturbance conviction at the beginning of this year. One of the many conditions of probation required him to maintain the peace with his girlfriend and remain law abiding.
However, the defendant — while on probation — was re-arrested and charged for yet another public peace disturbance, for which he was convicted last week. He will have to serve a period of detention of 30 days at the Territorial Correctional Facility (TCF)
Mani apologized to the court for his actions and begged for one more chance so he can continue his care for his parents and his family. He told the court he has learned his lesson, that breaking the law is not a good thing, and prison is not a good place to be.