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Another wife turns her husband in for marijuana after alleged assault

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Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — A man arrested for assaulting his wife is now charged for violating local drug laws. The man appeared in District Court last month for his initial appearance. He is charged with felonious restraint (involving domestic violence) and unlawful possession of marijuana, both felonies, along with 3rd degree assault, a class A misdemeanor.

Bail is set at $10,000.


On Apr. 13, 2021 about 4:00p.m, a woman walked into the Tafuna Police Substation (TPS) to report that she and her husband had been having arguments lately, and she was afraid to go home as he had become too controlling lately. The woman was later identified as the victim in this matter, while her husband was identified as the defendant.

The victim further stated that on Sunday, Apr. 12th, her husband had burnt cardboard in the kitchen, which was near the gas tank — endangering her; and that earlier that day Apr. 13th, while they were having an argument told her, “E sili a ga oti” (It would be best to be dead), however, she did not know whether he was referring to her or himself.

The victim said that her husband then pushed her into the room and locked the door, where he grabbed her by the arm and tried to assault her. She apologized and begged her husband not to hurt her. He also grabbed her by the face and forced her to look at him where he aggressively told her to look him.

The victim stated that unknown men had come to the house during the night and she had asked her husband about it, yet he was silent.  She later discovered her husband had planted three marijuana plants near the house.

The plants were confiscated by police upon arrival at the residence of the couple, and the defendant was apprehended. The defendant also gave officers consent to search the house, wherein no weapons or contraband were found..

The defendant was transported to the TPS for further questioning and detectives of the Vice and Narcotics Unit (VNU) were notified regarding the matter involving illegal drugs, however, detectives of the VNU was unable to provide a test kit.

DPS officer, Major Lima Togia, who is an expert witness in narcotics, confirmed the green leafy substance was marijuana.

The defendant was Mirandized, which he waived and provided the officers with a statement. He stated that he had planted the marijuana plants in November of last year. He also stated that he was having constant headaches and chest pains, so he would smoke marijuana to relieve him of his pain.

When asked if he had sold the plants, the defendant stated no and that it was for his personal use. He also stated that he had obtained the seeds form his friends, however, he was not able to remember their names.