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Man arrested for allegedly beating his two children

American Samoa District Court building

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — A 40-year-old man was arrested this past Wednesday after allegedly beating his two children with a broomstick, over a broken hair clipper.

The government claims that it was around 3:50p.m on Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018 that the defendant’s wife walked into the Tafuna Substation with Social Services personnel to file a complaint against her husband.

The wife told police that this is not the first time her husband beat the kids over minor stuff, as he also does it when he’s mad at someone or something. The victims (6 and 10 years old) both sustained injuries.

The 6-year-old has a bruise on his back while the 10-year-old sustained some bruises on her left hip.

On the day of the incident, the defendant's father-in-law intervened and tried to take the broom away but this caused the man to turn against him.

The defendant was apprehended at his home and transported to the Tafuna Substation. He refused to make a written statement.

In his verbal statement, the man told police he was disciplining his kids on what they can and cannot touch. He admitted using the broomstick but said he didn't hit them that hard.

The defendant made his initial appearance in District Court yesterday morning. He was represented by Assistant Public Defender Ryan Anderson, while prosecuting the case was Assistant Attorney General Laura Garvey.

He is charged with 3rd degree assault and private peace disturbance (PPD).

After yesterday's court proceedings, District Court Judge Fiti Sunia released the defendant on his own recognizance. He was ordered not to make any contact with his wife and children, and he is to find another place to stay until his case is resolved. He has to remain law abiding and make all of his court appearances.

The case is transferred to the Family, Drug & Alcohol Court (FDA), where the defendant is scheduled to appear on Jan. 28, 2019.