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Altercations at nightclub result in two arrests


Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — On March 24, 2024, a security guard from the Flame’s Nightclub contacted the Tafuna Police Substation for assistance as one of the security men was assaulted by two defendants. A police officer was also assaulted during the apprehension of one of the two defendants.

The two defendants were identified as Matafa Malaki and James Migo, who were both charged with:

Count 1: Public Peace Disturbance — a class B misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for six (6) months, a fine of $500, but not less than $150, or both; and,

Count 2: Assault in the Third Degree — a class A misdemeanor punishable for up to one (1) year, a fine of $1,000, or both.

Migo was also charged with two additional counts:

Count 3: Assault in the Third Degree — a class A misdemeanor punishable for up to one (1) year, a fine of $1,000, or both; and,

Count 4: Resisting Arrest — a class A misdemeanor punishable for up to one (1) year, a fine of $1,000, or both.

Malaki’s bail was set at $1,000, whereas Migo’s bail was set at $5,000.

Two separate affidavits in support of the criminal complaints against the two men were issued for each man, with both affidavits describing the incident in the same words.

According to the affidavits, on March 24, at about 2:03 a.m. a security guard at the Flames called to report a fight happening at the nightclub. Police officers responded to the call.

When police arrived at the scene, an officer was approached by a security guard who directed the officer to a taxi cab and pointed to a young male, who was later identified as Matafa Malaki.

According to the security guard, while they were trying to break up a fight, Malaki threw a beer bottle and nearly hit the right side of Dan Palemia’s (later identified as the victim) head. Malaki was immediately apprehended and placed in the police unit.

At this time, officers “heard a male voice yelling out, being aggravated and hostile.”

Police officers saw a security guard (later identified as Dan Palemia) on top of another male (who was later identified as James Migo) and they were scuffling.

When officers approached Palemia and Migo, Migo was seen to be very belligerent — allegedly screaming and yelling out profanities.

Immediately the officers stepped in and helped “the security because Migo flipped over facing upwards which gave him access to kick Palemia in the mouth,” which he did.

According to the affidavits, it took awhile to apprehend Migo, as he resisted arrest and verbally threatened the officers.

He continued to resist arrest even as officers had him in custody and were trying to get him to the police unit. At one point, he “intentionally bumped his head” on one of the, officer’s chin. Eventually they were able to transport Migo to the TPS for further investigation.

Arriving at the TPS, Migo was still belligerent, refusing to go inside the station, resulting in a scuffle with police officers.

 When Migo was finally inside the station it didn’t take him long before he began to threaten the officers inside.

The affidavits state that an investigation of the incident at the Flames bar showed Malaki allegedly causing a disturbance when he threw a beer bottle that “slipped (by)” D. Palemia’s head; and Migo allegedly caused a disturbance at the bar when he was fighting inside and was taken outside by security where he caused further trouble by becoming agitated and belligerent with them, assaulting D. Palemia and then resisting arrest during which he assaulted one of the officers.

(The men are not reported as knowing each other.)

The affidavits do not state when the men were confined at the Tafuna Correctional Facility or whether the defendants agreed to make statements — verbal or written.