Fifth Circuit Court proceedings for Monday

The man arrested for robbing Thrifty Mart in Puhi has had his trial postponed. Also, a woman was arrested and brought before Judge George Masuoka in Fifth Circuit Court Monday morning, and several decided to plead guilty in arrangements with the prosecutor’s office; deputy prosecutor David Rawlings representing the state.

  • Kenneth Gross, 42, was arrested for robbing Thrifty Mart in Puhi Dec. 14 after a nearby shopkeeper heard the clerks’ cries for help. According to police records, Gross tried to flee on foot but was caught by police. He is accused of two counts of first-degree robbery, first-degree burglary and petty theft.

    His jury trial was supposed to take place Monday, but as Gross retained services of attorney Mike Wichman, trial is scheduled for March 18.

  • Robert Summers, 46, of Kalaheo, was arraigned and entered a plea of guilty in a criminal property damage case stemming from a New Year’s Eve incident.

    Summers admitted that just after midnight at his residence, 4372 Puu Pulana Place, he used a shotgun to shoot five or six times at a passing pickup truck. The truck sustained damages to the body and shock absorber, according to police investigation. He was originally charged with one count each of terroristic threatening and reckless endangerment, which were dismissed under the plea agreement.

    Summers will have to pay restitution. Criminal property damage in the first degree is a a class B felony. He will be sentenced May 15, and faces a maximum sentence of 10 years and a $25,000 fine.

  • Patrick Belmonte, 40, accepted a plea agreement in a theft case. He admitted to stealing a boat motor from someone’s house while the owner was away on the Mainland, between Jan. 22-Feb. 10.

    Belmonte was originally charged with two counts of theft in the third degree and two counts of theft in the second degree, for stealing items worth more than $100 and $300 respectively. The plea agreement dropped all charges except theft in the second degree, a class B felony punishable by up to 10 years and a $25,000 fine.

  • Three people accused of drug and paraphernalia possession were to appear for trial, but they will have to return May 5 because one of the defendants was not present and had changed public defenders, the most recent being the morning of the supposed trial date.

    Jon Kawamura and Linda Planas, defendants with Annette Yamamoto, were present. Yamamoto was not. Her third and most recent court-appointed attorney, Peter Kea, stated that he had not received any files since being notified he would take over her case. Kawamura is represented by ; Planas is represented by Dan Hempey.

    The three were indicted last September on one charge each of possession of a dangerous drug (“any” amount of crystal methamphetamine) and use of/intent to use drug paraphernalia.

    The charges are both Class C felonies and are punishable by up to five years imprisonment. If found guilty of more than one felony in the same case, the sentence terms may be doubled.

  • David Thomas Moore, of O’ahu, was to appear for a jury trial for a misdemeanor charge of abuse against a family or household member, but the trial was postponed to May 5.

    His public defender, Edmund Acoba, said that the state prosecutor Jennifer Winn asked for a continuance earlier in order to get a witness from the Mainland to testify. Neither Winn nor the witness were present because of the continuance. Rawlings explained that another case took precedence because of the Judiciary’s Rule 48, which allows for felony cases to be dropped if they aren’t resolved within six months.

    Moore posted $1,000 bail last November, and his case was committed to Circuit Court in December.

    Moore said that “flying back and forth is hard” for him; Masuoka said he should call his public defender about a trial date before flying and that Acoba should check with the court.


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