Good record weighs in on gun violation sentence

LIHU‘E — A Koloa man was sentenced to probation for gun violations Wednesday in 5th Circuit Court.

Matthew Kimo Wilson, 35, was arrested on July 28 for gun permit and loaded firearm violations. He pleaded guilty to a charge of not keeping firearms in a permitted place on Dec. 14.

Judge Kathleen N.A. Watanabe granted Wilson’s motion to defer acceptance of his guilty plea with a five-year probation sentence.

If he completes a successful probation, the charges will not appear on his record.

Wilson was sentenced to time served and given a $1,000 fine. He must also forfeit the 30-30 caliber Winchester Model 94 hunting rifle and ammunition that was the subject of the violation.

The terms of probation also require that Wilson complete a drug and alcohol assessment and take a hunting safety course.

Wilson was represented by Deputy Public Defender Stephanie Sato. Second Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Samuel Jajich represented the state in place of Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Melinda Mendes.

Sato represented that hunting is a Wilson family tradition, and that it was the result of carelessness that he parked on the side of the road with the gun not properly stored in the vehicle.

Jajich said the state had no position on the deferred sentencing and recommended probation.

Watanabe noted that the lack of a criminal record and letters of support, including one from Wilson’s employer, who called him an “irreplaceable employee,” weighed in on the sentencing.

• Tom LaVenture, staff writer, can be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 224) or tlaventure@ thegardenisland.com.

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