Case awaits woman’s mental-health evaluation

LIHU’E — The Lihu’e District Court could not proceed with a Kaua‘i woman’s case Tuesday morning because of a clerical error in court documents.

Jennifer Allen, 35, experienced what was being referenced by the court as a “disequilibrium” after struggling to accurately recall events when being questioned under oath by her defense attorney Mark Zenger in her hearing in early November.

The court was unable to proceed with her current hearing because they are still awaiting the results from medical professionals regarding Allen’s mental stability, which was questioned in court after she struggled to recall events from her 2019 hearing.

The court stated the due date of the mental evaluation is Dec. 31, and her hearing was moved to Jan. 12.

If Allen is mentally fit to proceed, it was stated on the record that she could face potential perjury charges.

During the November hearing, Allen stated, on the record, that she was clear-headed during her September 2019 hearing when she opted to take a plea bargain with her then-public defender, Stephanie Char.

During the examination, Allen suggested Char pressured her, and she felt like she was “signing her future away” with the agreement. She even accused Char of unintentionally extorting her to sign the plea agreement.

Allen is facing four charges, including burglary in the second degree, theft in the second degree, criminal trespass in the second degree and criminal property damage in the fourth degree, for alleged crimes occurring on or around Oct. 7, 2018.

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Jason Blasco, reporter, can be reached at 245-0437 or jblasco@thegardenisland.com.

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