Two women arrested in an assault incident inside the TCF female unit
Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — Two women have been arrested in an assault incident of a female inmate that occurred at the Tafuna Correctional Facility (TFC) on Oct. 31, 2023. One of the women is a Correctional Officer, while the other is an inmate.
Faiane Sio has been arrested and charged with assault in the 3rd degree. She is a Correctional Officer at the TCF, and is accused of allegedly assaulting a female prisoner.
The count of Assault in the Third Degree is a class A misdemeanor, punishable by imprisonment for up to one year, a fine of $1,000, or both.
Bail is set at $1,000.
On October 31, 2023, at around 10 am, a Correctional Officer contacted the Tafuna Police Substation (TPS) and reported that an inmate, Lupelele Afu, assaulted another inmate, Chen Xiujn, inside of the unit housing females at the TCF.
When police arrived, the victim was being treated by the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) and was transported to the LBJ Medical Center for further treatment. “The victim sustained a puncture wound on her upper lip and a deep laceration in her lower inner lip,” according to the police affidavit.
A female inmate, Aiga Tuupo, was interviewed as a witness to the incident between the victim and Sio and saw that Afu suddenly “walked over“ to the victim and allegedly punched her in the face.
Afu was Mirandized and she agreed to answer questions and later provided a written statement about the matter.
According to Afu, Xiujn had an argument with her cousin on a different occasion. Afu’s cousin is also an inmate at TCF. So when she saw that Xiujn’s cell gate was open, “she walked over and punched her (Xiujn) in her mouth.”
Police were notified of Xiujn’s return to TCF from the hospital on the same day at around 3 pm, and they interviewed her.
According to Xiujn, Sio unlocked her cell room gate, “grabbed her bra strap and challenged her to a fight, then punched” her in the shoulder. Sio also “grabbed her by the neck trying to choke her.” Another TCF correctional officer stopped her and pulled Sio out of her cell, and was taken outside, where upon Afu “entered her cell and punched her in the mouth.”
The TCF correctional officer involved in the incident told police that “she was out back guarding some of the female inmates while they were doing laundry.” According to the affidavit, “because they needed laundry detergent, she walked inside the building and saw Sio unlocking the victim’s cell.” At that time, she saw Sio grabbing Xiun by her neck and she “interfered and pulled Sio out of there.” It was while they, Sio and her, were outside that she heard the inmates yelling that Xiujn was being assaulted by Afu.
Sio was located at her home, on the same day, a little after 3 pm and she was taken into custody for questioning. She was Mirandized and agreed to provide a statement regarding the incident.
According to Sio, she was upset when the TCF Warden called her in for a meeting, and “accused her of sleeping while on duty after being shown a photo.” Sio assumed that Xiujn was the only one that would have done that because “she remembers the victim around her while she was sleeping.”
It was after the meeting, according to Sio that she “went straight to the victim’s cell and unlocked it. “She grabbed the victim by her bra strap and asked why she (victim) ditched on her.”
Sio said she pushed the victim afterwards, and that’s when the TCF Correctional officer pulled her outside of the female unit.
Sio was booked and confined at TCF until the next sitting of the court.
Lupelele Afu has been accused and arrested for an alleged assault in the 3rd degree of a fellow inmate at the TCF.
Assault in the 3rd degree is a class A misdemeanor, punishable by imprisonment for up to one year, a fine of $1,000 or both.
Bail is set at $1,000.
According to the affidavit, on Oct. 31, 2023, a Correctional Officer contacted TPS and reported that Afu had assaulted inmate Xiujn inside of the female unit at TCF.
The affidavit for Afu collaborates the incident as described in Sio’s affidavit, including an interview with the same witness in Sio’s case, as well as with the victim and the Correctional Officer who pulled Sio out of Xiujn’s cell.
Both women are noted as US nationals.