Truck theft, drugs lead to 5 years in prison

LIHUE — An Anahola woman convicted of drug possession and thefts, including a truck that has yet to be found — received three, five-year prison terms on Wednesday in 5th Circuit Court.

Missy Maileann Napua Nuuhiwa, 33, said that at her age she can no longer sustain a drug lifestyle that had given her “a criminal mind.” Her priority is to clean herself up and mend relationships with her family.

“I know that what I did was unacceptable,” Nuuhiwa said. “I am not good at fixing things and all I can say is I am sorry. I can’t do this anymore.”

Court-appointed defense attorney Mark Zenger said the common theme is the crimes were committed to feed a drug habit.

He asked the court to consider probation with drug rehabilitation and up to a year in jail given that she has already served seven months.

State Deputy Prosecuting Attorney George White said he agreed the crimes were fueled by drugs and involved questionable company. He objected to probation, saying the defendant failed probation for a second-degree theft conviction in 2006 and was re-sentenced to the five-year prison term.

The first case followed a Jan. 10 arrest for unauthorized control of a propelled vehicle. A search warrant found marijuana and methamphetamine in her belongings. 

On Dec. 28, 2013, Nuuhiwa was in a pickup truck driven by Christopher Martin, according to White.

The two were driving through Nawiliwili, when Martin stopped to make a delivery. He asked Nuuhiwa to remain with the vehicle and when he returned both she and the truck were gone.

Martin, who was in court on Wednesday, said the truck was willed to him by his late father. The vehicle hasn’t been found and Nuuhiwa just recently provided information on to whom it was transferred.

Zenger and White both said they believed the information would lead police to the vehicle. 

Martin said the keys to all of his vehicles, tool boxes and other equipment were in the truck. He spent considerable time and expense getting another vehicle licensed to drive to his contracting work.

“But I can forgive you,” he said to Nuuhiwa, “if only because I don’t want to carry all of that in my heart.”

Nuuhiwa thanked him and broke into tears.

In the second case, Nuuhiwa and co-defendant Punani Mundon were charged with second-degree theft for taking items belonging to a couple on an area beach on Sept. 13, 2013. A search warrant on their bags following an arrest found an iPhone, binoculars and prescription medication.

The case was part of Nuuhiwa’s plea agreement. Mundon was accepted into a drug rehabilitation program with a trial date set for Jan. 5, 2015.

The third case occurred on Aug. 4, 2013, when Nuuhiwa asked someone to use an iPhone.

When the individual agreed, she refused to return the phone saying, “he would have to fight her for it,” according to White. Upon her arrest, police discovered a phone in her bag, along with methamphetamine, marijuana and drug paraphernalia.

The prison sentences will run concurrently.

Nuuhiwa agreed to an $18,000 restitution for the vehicle. The court ordered another $1,000 in restitution to the couple at the beach to cover their deductible for an insurance reimbursement.

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