LIHUE — A woman who admitted to faking drug tests and obtaining medicine under false pretenses was sentenced to 10 years in prison Thursday.
Cheri Numazawa appeared in front of Judge Randall Valenciano on two separate cases involving multiple drug charges relating to several arrests, the most recent in June 2016.
In one case, she was originally charged with promoting a dangerous drug in the second degree, two counts of possession of drug paraphernalia, two counts of promoting a dangerous drug in the third degree and driving without a license.
On Thursday, she was in court on one count each of promoting a dangerous drug and possession of drug paraphernalia. The other charges were dismissed in December.
She was represented by Shuana Cahill in that case.
In the second case, Numazawa, 35, is charged with possession of methamphetamine in the first degree, drug paraphernalia, driving without a valid driver’s license, meth trafficking in the first degree, three counts of promoting a dangerous drug in the third degree, promoting a detrimental drug in the third degree, two counts of possession of one-eighth ounce or more of methamphetamine and three counts of drug paraphernalia.
In December, several of the charges were dismissed. And on Thursday, she faced two counts promoting a dangerous drug and two counts of possession of drug paraphernalia.
Samuel Jajich was her attorney in that case.
“I’ve gotten to know Cheri a little bit, and she has extraordinary amount of talent. She can do anything she can put her mind, that’s up to her how she uses it,” Jajich said Thursday. “I’m hopeful she will use it in a way that supports herself and family.”
During the proceedings, Numazawa said since participating in Lifetime Stand, a program available to inmates, she has learned about herself.
“It taught me a lot to dig deep and deal with my issues,” she said. “I’m ready to change my life and move forward.”
During the proceedings, Cahill asked Valenciano to consider a letter written by the defendant.
“It’s probably one of the most honest letters from a client I’ve read. It discloses the court a lot of information about her past that probably no one would know unless she told them,” Cahill said. “She was extremely honest with the court. I ask the court to appreciate her honesty, and I believe that’s a step in the right direction.”
In the letter, she talks about faking urine samples and giving false information to her counselors to get medicine, Valenciano said.
Tim Tate, deputy prosecuting attorney, said he hopes the sentence will teach Numazawa a lesson.
“We hope that she takes this time to really think about how much destruction and waste in her life drugs have been for her and her family,” Tate said. “Hopefully when she comes out on parole she won’t go back to that.”
Tate said he hopes Numazawa will become a positive role model for her children.
“Her children are watching her to see which direction she goes, so she has to realize they’re likely to follow her footsteps. And if she wants something better for them, now is the chance to make it up to her children,” Tate said.
Numazawa has been arrested 58 times since 2003, with the most recent arrest being on June 2, according the Kauai Police Department. Her arrest history includes 28 felonies, 18 misdemeanors and 12 petty misdemeanors.
“You’ve established quite a criminal history, but I guess the disappointing part is that the court made efforts to assist you,” Valenciano said. “You graduated from drug court, and my first impression was that you were doing well.”
But, by not being honest throughout the process, Valenciano said Numazawa was cheating the system.
“What you didn’t understand was the system was trying to help you. You didn’t take advantage of the system that was expending resources to help you, and it spun out of control,” he said.