Young man released after 15 month wait for his day in court
Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — A 24-year-old man who was convicted of stealing was released from custody last week, after the court determined that the 15 months he served at the Territorial Correctional Facility (TCF), to await sentencing, was enough.
Frank Kalolo, under a plea agreement with the government, pled guilty to the amended charge of stealing, a class C felony, punishable by not more than 7 years imprisonment, and/or a fine of not more than $5,000.
With his guilty plea, Kalolo admits that sometime during Sept. 05 of last year, he misappropriated property that belonged to another person.
During sentencing, Kalolo apologized to the government, the court, and people of American Samoa for his behavior and asked for forgiveness, noting, “Please, I want to go home to my family.” His father and his aunt, both present in court, were in tears when Kalolo apologized.
Defense attorney asked the court to give Kalolo another chance. He said his client is only 24 years old, very immature, and he has advised him to think about his future. He said his client is a suitable candidate for probation. The prosecutor echoed the statement.
The court said that while Kalolo is young, the pre-sentence report shows that he's had a prior run-in with the law.
“At the time it seemed minor and the punishment that was ordered in those cases also seemed minor… now you’re in the big league, so the offenses are no longer considered minor, and the punishment will no longer be minor, and you ought to keep that in mind as you go forward,” the court told the defendant.
Kalolo was placed on probation for 7 years under certain conditions. He has to remain a law abiding at all times, visit the probation office once a month, and serve 28 months at the TCF.
“You will be credited the 15 months you have already served; the balance of 13 months will be stayed as long as you comply with all conditions of your probation,” the court told Kalolo, who was also ordered to pay a $1,000 fine within 6 months, and secure gainful employment.
According to the government, Kalolo unlawfully entered a house of a elderly couple and stole several items from the garage and the living room.