Man gets 5 years for assault on officer

LIHU‘E — A Waimea man was sentenced to five years in prison for the first-degree assault of a law enforcement officer.

Joshua Kaimana Godfrey, 28, received the straight sentence with no probation Thursday in 5th Circuit Court. The incident occurred July 20, 2011, when a Kaua‘i Police Department officer served Godfrey with an arrest warrant and was reportedly assaulted by the defendant.

Godfrey pleaded guilty on Dec. 8, 2011. His sentencing hearings were continued twice to complete diagnostic reports and to resolve other cases.

County deputy prosecuting attorney John Murphy said the state recommended the five-year open term to run concurrent with sentencing in other cases. The state agreed to dismiss charges of resisting arrest and first-degree attempted escape in the assault case.

Murphy noted that the victim in the case chose not to speak at sentencing and was not requesting restitution.

State Deputy Public Defender Stephanie Sato requested the five-year sentence and asked that fines and fees be waived with the straight prison sentence and no probation.

The mandatory minimum if Godfrey had received probation was 20 months in jail.

Chief Judge Randal Valenciano ordered the five-year prison term for the class C felony, and issued a $105 crime victim compensation fee.

Valenciano spoke to Godfrey briefly, saying the situation could have been much worse.

The judge said it was most disappointing to learn that a crowd of people attempted to aid Godfrey’s escape rather than stopping him and coming to the aid of the assaulted officer.

That is a sad commentary on the citizenry trying to prevent an arrest, Valenciano said.

Godfrey has been held at both Kaua‘i County Correctional Center and Halawa Correctional Center for other felony cases and probation violations that led to new felony charges. His other prior convictions include family abuse, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, liquor violations and violating a protection order.

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