LIHUE — A Kauai man was sentenced in Fifth Circuit Court Wednesday to two years of probation for abuse of a family member, a misdemeanor, after pleading no contest to the charge. He was also ordered to pay court fees and to participate in parenting classes.
“The underlying incident was his girlfriend who he has one child with whose now 2 years old, was on heroin and acting out. He took the child out of the Kapahi residence and another child who is not his biological child and went to the North Shore. She went out there, was acting crazy and he restrained her,” attorney Mark Zenger told the court.
As a result of that action, Joshua Waipa, 33 of Hanalei, was charged with this crime, he said.
The couple is no longer together and Waipa, who still lives on the North Shore and has been assisting in flood-relief efforts, is raising his child, Zenger said.
“We would ask the court consider counseling under appropriate circumstances and a fine of a modest amount,” Zenger said.
Waipa said he is working at a restaurant helping to feed the children and the families who can’t make it out of the North shore, as well as the volunteers who are helping in the flood-relief efforts.
After questioning from Judge Kathleen Watanabe, Waipa told the court that he and his ex-girlfriend got in a verbal fight while driving in a car. His ex-girlfriend was attempting to drive them to the police department, but he got out of the car at the Hanalei bridge because he had an outstanding warrant at the time.
“Did you hit her? Did you choke her?” Watanabe asked.
“I did none of that,” he said.
As part of a plea agreement, Waipa agreed to participate in a parenting class.
“You understand that if you plea to it then you take the consequences?” Watanabe asked. “You can’t have it both ways. You can’t plea to get out of it and then say you don’t want to deal with the consequences. So are you ready to be sentenced by the court?”
In addition to his probation with credit for time served, Waipa was ordered to pay a $55 crime victim plea, a $150 probation fee assessment and a $50 internet-crimes-against-children fee.
He will have to complete a parenting program, is prohibited from having any contact with the alleged victim and participate in any rehabilitation programs ordered by his probation officer.
Waipa has a previous conviction for third-degree assault.
There was no victim impact statement read during the proceedings.
Bethany Freudenthal, crime, courts and county reporter, can be reached at 652-7891 or firstname.lastname@example.org.