Using another person’s dryer results in probation

LIHU‘E — Drying clothes in someone else’s cottage earned a woman a year of probation.

Chief Judge Randal Valenciano said during a sentencing hearing Thursday in 5th Circuit Court that the crime was small, but the principle was big since it involved the reasonable expectation that the sanctity of one’s dwelling and property would not be violated by the uninvited.

Terri Ann Berg, 48, of Koloa, was arrested on Nov. 27 and later charged with first-degree criminal trespassing and first-degree burglary.

Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Rebecca Vogt said the defendant  was staying at a Kaua‘i resort cottage in November, and entered someone else’s cottage more than once to dry her laundry without permission while the tenants were away.  The victim noticed the act and confiscated the clothing, giving it to the manager, according to the prosecutor.

Berg accepted a plea deal on an amended criminal trespassing charge just two days before sentencing. In her statement to the court, Berg said it was a stupid mistake and that she has since apologized to the victim and management staff.

Deputy public defender Stephanie Sato said Berg had already served a day in jail for the offense. She waived her rights to a pre-sentencing report and accepted immediate sentencing.

The state dropped a first-degree burglary charge that could have resulted in a lengthier probation, jail time or fines. Berg was sentenced to one year’s probation and 75 hours of community service.


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