Man steals ex-girlfriend’s vehicle to ‘do something bad to return the favor’
Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — A man accused of stealing a vehicle from a home in the Tafuna area was arrested after the matter was reported to police by the owner of the vehicle, his ex-girlfriend.
Mase Alaese made his initial appearance in Court last month.
Alaese is charged with 1st degree burglary and stealing, both class C felonies, punishable by a term of imprisonment of up to sevens years, a $5,000 fine or, pursuant to A.S.C.A 46.2101, a fine equal to twice the amount of gain from the commission of said crime, up to a maximum of $20,000, or both such fine and imprisonment.
Bail is set at $10,000.
The government claims that on July 29th, 2021 around 6a.m, the Central Police Station received a phone call from the Tafuna Police Substation (TPS), informing them that a woman had called the 911 Emergency line reporting her vehicle had been stolen from her apartment, and that she suspected her ex-boyfriend was the person who stole her vehicle while she was at work for the night shift.
TPS called the victim back to confirm her report.
After speaking to the victim, investigators radioed an All Points Bulletin to all police units on the road.
According to the victim’s statement to police, it was on the same morning, July 29th approximately 5:50a.m when she arrived home from work and started working outside her apartment where she then noticed her pick-up truck was gone and must have been stolen. The victim immediately called the 911 Emergency line and reported it.
Furthermore, the victim stated to police that she had items in the vehicle such as a black backpack, personnel items, vehicle documents and keys, a blue backpack, Apple Laptop, black Apple iPad, and a small purse with $329 cash inside.
Around 6:35a.m on the same day, a police sergeant informed investigators that while patrolling the Tafuna area at around 5:32a.m — before the All Points Bulletin went out — she had observed the pickup speeding on the public highway heading east, and she pulled it over and cited the driver (defendant) for speeding, before letting him go.
According to the police sergeant, the driver of the vehicle was Mase Alaese.
Police were later contacted by a female individual, who had heard that they were looking for Alaese, and told them Alaese had called her to ask for her help. He asked if she could come over and take the pickup and hide it, because he didn’t want anybody to know that he had stolen the vehicle from his ex-girlfriend’s apartment.
Police visited Alaese’s home but he was not there. Two weeks later, police were able to get a hold of Alaese and asked him to come to the TPS to discuss something important. Alaese agreed and went to the TPS on his own.
Investigators spoke with Alaese at the TPS regarding the stolen vehicle. He was Mirandized, and he signed the waiver portion, agreeing to make a statement to investigators.
According to the defendant’s statement, he was angry to learn that his ex-girlfriend was going out with a male friend of his. He also asked his ex-girlfriend to pay back the money she had borrowed for her mother’s funeral but she refused. That’s when he made up his mind to do something bad to return the favor.
And, that’s when he went to his ex-girlfriend’s apartment and stole her vehicle, as he had the spare key to the vehicle.
The vehicle and all items inside of it were recovered according to police, and returned to the owner — the ex-girlfriend.