Man who sold items he stole promises to pay and gets another chance
Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — A 30-year-old man convicted of stealing a computer, a box of jewelry, one gold ring, a camera and a cellphone from an Asian store in Nu’uuli has been given another chance by the court.
Mikaele Oloapu appeared in court last week for sentencing. He was initially charged with second-degree robbery and stealing; both felonies, along with a third count of property damage, a class A misdemeanor.
But under a plea agreement with the government, accepted by the court, Oloapu pled guilty to stealing, a class C felony, punishable by up to 7 years in jail, 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 the crime, up to a maximum of $20,000, or both the fine and imprisonment for each count.
Oloapu admits that he stole several items from an Asian store in Nu’uuli on the night of Nov. 8, 2019
When given the chance to speak, Oloapu, who has been in custody since his arrest last year, apologized and begged for another chance so he can return home and care for his parents. He also apologized to the victim and promised that he would pay back the money for the items he stole from the store.
When asked about the items he stole, Oloapu told the court that he sold all of the items to another man in exchange for drugs and alcohol for him and his friends.
The defendant’s attorney asked the court to sentence his client to probation, without any additional period of detention. He said Oloapu is truly remorseful and has learned his lesson. The prosecutor echoed the defense submission, saying the government believes Oloapu is remorseful.
Oloapu was sentenced to 7 years imprisonment. Execution of sentence was suspended and he was placed on probation for 7 years, subject to certain conditions. He is to serve 28 months at the TCF; however, he will only have to serve 18 months, the remaining months will be stayed, based on good behavior.
According to court records, Oloapu has already served 12 months at the TCF. He will serve 6 more months before being released. Upon release Oloapu is ordered to remain law abiding and find a job to pay his restitution of $1,519.
The court also advised OIoapu that this is his second conviction and if he appears in court next time for any offense, the will be no more chances for him.
In 2012, Oloapu was sentenced to 5 years probation under the condition that he serve 20 months at the TCF, after being convicted of unlawful possession of drugs. Oloapu’s probation expired in 2017.
Oloapu and another man were arrested by police for disturbing the public peace at the Utulei Beach during a weekend party with some friends. During a body search, police discovered two small baggies containing methamphetamine inside Oloapu’s right pocket.
One year later, he was arrested for robbery and stealing.