Couple sentenced in 2012 meth case

  • Michelle Salvas

  • Cory Sarmiento

LIHUE — Michelle Salvas and Cory Sarmiento, both 38, formerly of Lihue, were each sentenced to serve prison terms for their involvement in a July 2012 incident, in which they led police on a chase through the back roads of Wailua, rammed a Kauai Police Department vehicle, and were found in possession of methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia.

Following years of protracted litigation, the couple was convicted by a Fifth Circuit jury following a trial in July 2017 of multiple felony drug charges as well as resisting an order to stop a motor vehicle.

While they were pending sentencing, Salvas and Sarmiento apparently fled to the mainland. They were eventually apprehended in Washington and extradited back to Kauai.

Salvas was sentenced on Feb. 1 to serve concurrent five-year prison terms for two charges of promoting a dangerous drug in the third degree.

Sarmiento was sentenced Thursday to serve concurrent five-year prison terms for two charges of promoting a dangerous drug in the third degree and a consecutive one-year sentence for the resisting order to stop a motor vehicle charge.

Salvas and Sarmiento each also face felony bail jumping charges. Those cases are set for trial later this year.

Salvas was represented at trial by Dan Hempey, Esq. and Sarmiento was represented by Myles Breiner, Esq. Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Tim Tate tried the case and Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Sean Van Demark represented the State at sentencing. The case was investigated by the KPD Vice/Narcotics unit.

4 Comments
  1. jake Liggett February 9, 2018 8:59 am Reply

    How will we ever get meth under control on this island it takes this long to prosecute the dealers. They’re
    actually selling the stuff out of parked cars in the Eleele school parking lot in the evenings. It getting ridiculous.


  2. Stephanie Alves February 9, 2018 2:31 pm Reply

    This case was corrupted from the very begging they did not get a fair trial. Please read the following truth. Its public record if you do the research you will find out everything I said is correct.

    February 9, 2018

    The Garden Island

    Attn: News Room Bethany Freudenthal

    Hello, my name is Stephanie, I called your news room about a week ago and was told to email you my story and maybe you can get this news out there to the public regarding how unfair the court system in State of Hawaii are, mainly what’s been going on in the island of Kauai. Here is the truth from my own investigations. The County of Kauai just posted the following picture and below posting on Facebook so that everyone who didn’t follow the story can trash them to make KPD look good also a lot of it was fabricated. These two Michelle Salvas Sarmiento and Cory Sarmiento. Did not have a fair trial from the begging.

    I watched the entire trial on video that was sent to me, and they should have had a change in venue because Kauai is so small everyone knows each other. Fact 1: I’ll start with the Jury selection.
    Most of the juror selected new each other. Now during the resese a KPD police officer who was to testify as the finger print expert was caught outside of the court room while they were on brake by the defendant’s attorney chit chatting with one of the jurors because they were longtime friends after Judge Valenciano specifically said no talking to any juror. So, the Judge dismissed the juror but not the officer.

    Fact 2: Most of the evidence was circumstantial. In July 2017 both defendant’s Michelle Salvas Sarmiento and Cory Sarmiento were charged with the same crime and was told that they could face up to 5 years per count. Kauai’s fifth circuit court charged them with 12 counts. The jury came back with guilty on 11 counts and not guilty FOR Cory Sarmiento on one count of alluding police and resisting arrest. THE BELOW ARTICLE THAT WAS POSTED TO FACEBOOK STATED CORY SARMIENTO GOT AND EXTRA YEAR FOR ALLUDING POLCE AND RAMING A POLICE CAR. SO HOW COULD HE HAVE A NOT GUILTY VERDICT FOR THAT AND STILL HE GOT A TOTAL OF 6 YEARS AND MICHELLE 5 YEARS. MICHELLE SALVAS ALSO GOT A 1,000,000,000 MILLION DOLLOR BAIL WOW ITS EXTREME DON’T YOU THINK (SHE WAS NOT A SERIAL KILLER) AND CORY SARMIENTO HAD NO BAIL. I believe when they came back from the mainland, Kauai is trying to charge them with a different crime, because Michelle and Cory got to different sentence for the same crime. Also, known as DOUBLE JEPARDY. WHICH IS AGAINST THEIR CONSTINTUSIONAL RIGHTS AND THE LAW.

    Fact 3: Yes, the defendants ran to the mainland, because they were scared, they were told that they could do 5 years per count that’s over 60 years wow I would have ran too. So, Washington US Marshal Service apprehended them both at an Auburn Washington hotel where I was notified to get their belongings and their dog. We also were able to pick up their car the next day. They would not have released any items of there’s if they were busted with drugs or paraphernalia.
    Michelle and Cory Sarmiento were held with a $25,000.00 bail for almost 3 months waiting to see if Washington was going to charge them with any crime. The bail was for Washington after Washington decided that they were not charging them with anything then they revoked their bail as an out of state fugitive warrant, then notified Hawaii. It was during the holidays, so Hawaii did not come and get them till second week of January 2018. Hawaii signed them out of Pierce County jail at 5am, Michelle first Cory 5am the next morning. In the mean time Kauai is like 6 hours away, they were traveling almost 12 to 15 hours and had nothing to eat or drink all that time. They had Michelle’s ankles shackled so tight that her ankles were dripping blood and very bruised. They treated them like animals. Wow it just boils me.

    When they returned to Kauai.

    Michelle Salvas Sarmiento went to court February 1, 2018 her attorney Dan Hempey whom she paid thousands of dollars to had quit, FROM WHAT I UNDERSTAND YOU CAN’T JUST QUIT YOUR CLIENT UNTIL TRIAL IS OVER. So, February 1, 2018 Michelle had public defender, Judge Valenciano should have post pone so he could be brought up to speed with the case, but no he was ready to rule and gave Michelle open 5, her attorney ask for 1 year and probation. Michelle crying and pleaded with the court to send her to treatment, the judge wasn’t having it, and Cory Sarmiento had his day in court February 08, 2018, his attorney Myles Briner also quit so Cory had public defender as well and was given open 6 the extra year for alluding police and ramming police car. There were no car damages and that was not brought up in trial. The extra year was not guilty. There was no mention during trial of ramming police car. This case was also 5 years old it took KPD 5 years of wasting tax payer’s money to convict 2 drug addict that are felons and can’t get jobs or even welfare for that matter, so they have to find other means to support themselves. They came to the mainland for a fresh start and to stay clean and have family support that can help them do that, and they did stay clean, there were nothing for them on Kauai but getting into trouble and constantly harass by police.

    Washington could not charge them with anything because they had nothing, no drugs, also what was mentioned in court, was they have other up coming court dates which Kauai want to add on sentencing for having 8 grams of methamphetamine and over $80,000.00 in cash. They were booked into the Pierce County Jail in Tacoma, Washington. If you look it up you will see all charges dismissed. I don’t know were Kauai is getting their information from, but it’s hear say. I guess judges can do what ever they want.

    Therefore, I think the Hawaii court system is not fair and they need to be on the same page when sentencing. AND FOLLOW THEIR RULE INACENT UNTIL PROVEN GUILTY BEYOUND A RESONABLE DAUGHT. Kauai Judge Randal Valenciano Gave a couple of drug addicts a very harsh sentence with no treatment. while other judges give probation for murder, I’m referring to 6-year-old Peter boy Kemp how his mother got 10 years’ probation for murdering her son. And 10 days for violating probation WOW. Also Judge Kathline Watanabe gave a man like 1 to 2 years and probation for killing his girlfriend nice. (go to Hawaii an kill someone you probably get away with it).

    I know it’s kind of long, but you can skim through here and see if I have a story. I promise my sister I will help in anyway I can to get her and her husband a fair trial. Even if I must file an appeal myself. And yes, Michelle Salvas Sarmiento is my little sister.

    Thank you for your time and if there is anything else you need from me to get the word out there like copy of court case, and video of trial, please let me know.

    Thanks again

    Stephanie Alves


    1. tunnels February 9, 2018 5:13 pm Reply

      Total nonsense. Had the two of them been hard working, (real jobs-not drug dealing) contributing members of society living an honest life, they’d be sitting here typing a reply like I am right now. Fact of the matter is… they were meth dealers and users, period and got caught. Then the two of them jumped bail for God’s sake! They got what they deserved. End of story.


  3. Wailua February 10, 2018 2:08 pm Reply

    Wow. Where shall I start? Let’s begin with their $1,000,000 bail that you think is excessive because, “they aren’t murderers” – as you put it. No, they are not murderers but they are convicted meth dealers that made the decisioo to flee the state instead of face the punishment for a crime they freely and wholeheartedly continued to do for years, even throughout their trial and up until the day they got on the plane to Washington. There is nothing shocking or excessive about their bail. When they were first arrested, they had no history or being a flight risk so their bail was reasonable. This is all very simple to understand. Ifyou behave, you can post bail. If you run and they catch you, your bail will be increased considerably to ensure you wont run again.
    As for the “Double Jeopardy”
    comment…they are not being “charged again for the same crime”. They are being sentenced for the crime they ran from. And to answer your question about why Cory has 6 years but Michelle only 5, it’s because he was also found guily of resisting an order to stop. If you are still confused, I will break it down for you. He was charged with 2 additional charges on top of the drug charges. Resisting an order to stop a vehicle, and resisting arrest. The jury found him NOT guilty of resisting arrest, but GUILTY of resisting an order to stop. So that “additional year” you are referring to is for that charge. This is also all piblic record, so instead of basing your opinions on FB posts and taking whatever you read as fact, you should head down to the courthouse and request copies of their case file.
    These are not innocent people wrongly accused by a conspiratorial governement. For MANY years they distributed crystal meth on our island with no second thought as to the consequences of their actions. They took every opportunity to blast our law enforcement all over the internet and even verbally attacked anyone that disagreed with their rantings on Craigslist “rants and raves”. Well their party is over. Justice has been served.


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