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Man who hit friend on the head with a rock after rugby game will be sentenced

American Samoa High Court building

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — The High Court has accepted a plea agreement between the government and Alesana Lafoga, 40, who was arrested and charged for hitting his friend on the head with a rock after a rugby game in Pavaivai.

Lafoga, who has been in custody since his arrest, unable to post a $15,000 cash bond, appeared in High Court last week for a Change of Plea hearing. Assistant Public Defender Rob McNeill represented, while prosecuting was Assistant Attorney General Laura Garvey.

Lafoga was initially charged with one count of first-degree assault; but under a plea deal with the government, he pled guilty to the amended charge of second degree assault.

According to terms of the plea agreement, on Mar. 28, 2018 Lafoga went to the victim’s house to speak to him about what happened during a rugby game earlier that same day. Lafoga and the victim are very close friends.

During the conversation, the victim said something that made Lafoga angry. Lafoga then punched Unasa on the face, causing Unasa to fall down. Unasa stood up and threw his own punches, hitting Lafoga in the jaw.

Lafoga became angry and that’s when he reached for a rock, which he used to hit Unasa on the head.

Court filings say Unasa was taken to the LBJ Medical Center where he was hospitalized in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) for 3 days.

Sentencing for Lafoga is scheduled next month.