Man admits to police his meth habit causing most problems in relationship with girlfriend
Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — A man arrested for assaulting his girlfriend is now charged with unlawful possession of illegal drugs, which police allegedly found in his possession.
Tamati Fereti appeared in Court last month for his initial appearance where he informed the court that he wanted to exercise his constitutional rights to a preliminary examination (PX).
Fereti is charged with one count of unlawful possession of methamphetamine (meth); unlawful possession of marijuana, both unclassified felonies, along with 3rd degree assault involving domestic violence and disturbing the private peace (PPD) involving domestic violence, both misdemeanors.
Bail is set at $10,000.
On May 29th, 2021, the Tafuna Police Substation (TPS) received a call from a man in Pavaivai asking for help after his sister had been assaulted by the defendant, who is the father of her four young children.
The defendant was later identified as Tamati Fereti.
Several police officers responded to the call and met up with the reporter in this case, who is the victim’s brother.
The victim’s brother told police that he was working at his plantation at the back of his house when he heard his sister calling out his name for help. He ran to the house and found the defendant hitting his sister with a 2x4 causing bruises to her hands and back. The defendant also damaged several items inside the house including the victim’s phone, iPad and a laptop.
For safety reasons, Fereti was immediately placed under police custody, but before Fereti was transported to the TPS, he was patted down and police discovered a hard object inside Fereti’s right pocket. When asked about the hard object, Fereti told police that “it was a pipe”.
Police pulled out a glass pipe containing white crystalline substance. They also found two hand rolled marijuana cigarettes inside Fereti’s left pocket.
Then denied knowing where the glass pipe and the marijuana joints came from; and further stated to police that the long pants he was wearing belong to his older brother, so it must be his brother’s drugs.
However, Fereti eventually admitted that the illegal drugs found in his possession belonged to him. He told investigators that he went to Iliili two days prior to his arrest and purchased meth from a friend for $20. However, the marijuana joints were given to him for free by the man who sells meth at a house in Iliili.
When asked about the domestic violence case, Fereti broke down into tears and apologized to investigators for what happened between him and his girlfriend. He stated that it was his meth problem that caused many problems in their relationship and every time he smoked meth or marijuana, his girlfriend would always come out against him.
Fereti admitted that he punched his girlfriend in the face before he used a 2x4 to hit her some more. While he was assaulting his girlfriend, his girlfriend’s brother called out his name and asked him to stop.
He further stated to police that he was mad when his girlfriend’s mother accused him of stealing property from the house and selling it to get drugs on the day of the incident.
In 2011, Fereti was placed on probation for 12 months after being convicted for third-degree assault. The conviction stemmed from an incident where he assaulted his girlfriend (the same victim) by punching her in the face and kicking her in the back.
Four years later in 2015, Fereti was arrested and charged with disturbing the peace at his home, and domestic violence. He was convicted by the court and placed on probation for 12 months.