Week 20, Day 68

We will start out with some humor from the past today. Cheech and Chong did a skit where they were on patrol in Viet Nam. One of them had just been on patrol all night behind the enemy lines. He comes back across the enemy line in the morning and says: “I have been out shooting reds and yellows all night, and boy I am so sleepy.” That came to mind this morning, when a prediction made by a former extremely elderly former friend, who wants to be the center of the universe, did not come true. I guess, when you live bottled up by your own aging mind, the truth can be a nebulous term. Living in the past must be so comforting to this individual. It seems the delusion is his solution.

Court began at 9:26AM. I knew from the beginning that Frank Carson and the Athwal brothers were not going to be remanded to custody. The courtroom was not full of deputies beyond what was usual for our days in session. Judge Zuniga, looking rather frazzled, asks about the bail bonds. Seated, in front of me, was AJ Pontillo, and an associate who provided the judge with the required bail bond papers. The defendants were indeed able to post their bond, and will continue to be free men throughout the entirety of this trial. It cost them dearly, but freedom has a value that far exceeds the dollars involved. I must note that Marlisa Ferreira had a very sour look on her face, and Judge Zuniga did not seem to be pleased at all. Oh well, they tried. Sorry my old friend, you were proven wrong again.

We now go into the 402 hearing concerning what will be allowed in the testimony of Mike Maunakea and his wife. Judge Zuniga tells defense attorney Percy Martinez that this is his motion. Percy Martinez tells Judge Zuniga that he wants to enter two exhibits into evidence. He hands over some papers to the judge. Judge Zuniga immediately states that the report from the Turlock Police Department is hearsay. Percy Martinez states that Mike Maunakea was trading information to minimize the legal troubles his son Vegas Maunakea was facing in a first degree burglary case he was involved in. The case was litigated in February of 2017. Percy states that he will need to put some witnesses on the stand. Judge Zuniga immediately states that she wants to have a private conversation in her chambers with Marlisa Ferreira and Percy Martinez. The three of them disappear into her inner sanctum.

When they return to the courtroom, Judge Zuniga instructs the court clerk to send out for a report. The report was filed on 02/03/2017. It appears that the report shows that Mike Maunakea had approached an official named Jared Jordan, who was in the courtroom during his son’s trial, and offered to provide information concerning Frank Carson. Percy Martinez states that this resulted in a plea deal for his son that resulted in Vegas Maunakea getting 30 days in jail, and a reduction of the charges to second degree burglary. Vegas Maunakea also was sentenced to three years of probation. Percy Martinez states that he needs Jared Jordan to testify in this 402 hearing.

Percy Martinez now calls Jared Jordan to the stand. It turns out that he was the Prosecuting DA in Vegas Maunakea’s trial. Percy shows Mr. Jordan some documents, and asks Mr. Jordan if he was the person who sent an E-Mail to DA Investigator Kirk Bunch. Mr. Jordan: “Yes.” Percy shows that Mike Maunakea had contacted Jared Jordan on 06/20/2017, and that Jared Jordan had contacted Kirk Bunch on 06/22/2017. Percy states that Vegas Maunakea was in court on 06/20/2017, and the proceedings were continued to October 9, 2017, and that proceeding was continued to October 16, 2017. Percy Martinez shows that Vegas Maunakea plead guilty to 2nd degree burglary on October 16, 2017.

Jared Jordan states that he is not aware if Vegas Maunakea had spoken to DA Investigator Kirk Bunch, but he was aware that Kirk Bunch wanted to have a meeting. Once again, it is brought out that Vegas Maunakea had received only 30 days in jail for his 2nd degree burglary conviction. It is brought out by Mr. Jordan that a surveillance video, in the parking lot of the apartment complex, had captured more than one person who was involved in the burglary. The video showed one person carrying a 60 inch TV to a car. Percy: “Was Vegas Maunakea seen on the video?” Mr. Jordan: “Yes, but I was not convinced beyond a reasonable doubt.” Percy: “Was the person seen on the video huge and obese?” Mr. Jordan: “Yes.” Percy Martinez has no further questions at this time.

Marlisa Ferreira takes over asking Jared Jordan the questions. She gets Mr. Jordan to state that Mike Maunakea had spoken to DA Investigator Kirk Bunch on 06/22/2017. She gets Mr. Jordan to state that Vegas Maunakea had gotten a new public defender named Amy Kennedy on 06/22/2017. Marlisa Ferreira now gets Mr. Jordan to state that the preliminary examination had been moved to 08/09/2017, and then moved to October 16, 2017, and October 17, 2017. She gets Mr. Jordan to state that the preliminary examination did not go forward. Jared Jordan states that he watched the surveillance video two more times and was skeptical that it showed Vegas Maunakea. Jared Jordan states that was one of the reasons why he decided to go for a 30 day sentence. Jared Jordan states that he observed Vegas Maunakea in the courtroom, and he did not appear to be dangerous. He stated that Vegas Maunakea did not previously have a criminal record. Jared Jordan states that the victim of the burglary, Ms. Maloney, had a son who allegedly had threatened Vegas Maunakea. Jared Jordan states that he did not have any conversation with Kirk Bunch, and had made no deals with Vegas Maunakea for Mike Maunakea’s testimony in the Carson case. Jared Jordan states that he did not know until this morning that Mike Maunakea was going to be involved in the Carson case. Marlisa Ferreira has no further questions at this time. Marlisa Ferreira has one more question that she forgot to ask. She asks Jared Jordan who made the offer of a 30 day sentence. Jared Jordan: “The defense.”

Defense attorney Hans Hjertonsson takes over asking the questions. Hans gets Jared Jordan to state that Vegas had been assigned a public defender for his entire case. Hans gets Jared Jordan to admit that the homeowner named Maloney had watched the surveillance video, and had identified Vegas Maunakea as being one of the people on the video. Hans brings out the fact that Vegas Maunakea was a resident in the same apartment complex as Ms. Maloney. Hans brings out that law enforcement had contacted Vegas Maunakea concerning the burglary. Hans states that the investigators had identified Vegas Maunakea as being on the surveillance video. Hans gets Jared Jordan to state that the victim’s son, Larry Maloney, had threatened Vegas Maunakea concerning the burglary.

Defense attorney Jai Gohel now starts asking Jared Jordan the questions. Jai Gohel brings out that the burglars took a 60 inch TV, a Blue Ray player, a Play Station, a machetti, 200 Norco pills, and Air Soft hand guns. The total dollar amount of the items stolen was around $3600.00. Jai Gohel: “That is a strike?” Jared Jordan: “Yes.” We now take a break.

It is now 11:00AM, and Jai Gohel continues his questioning of Jared Jordan. It is brought out once again that Mike Maunakea was the one who contacted Mr. Jordan, and had told him that he had information on Frank Carson. It is brought out that Jared Jordan had sent his E-Mail to Kirk Bunch before Vegas Maunakea’s case was called. It is brought out that the continuance had occurred after Mike Maunakea had spoken to DA Investigator Kirk Bunch. Jai Gohel has no further questions.

At this time, defense attorney Percy Martinez points out that Detective Frank Navarro has been sitting in the courtroom. He is a witness in this case, and has been barred from the courtroom. Judge Zuniga scolds Marlisa Ferreira, and sends Detective Navarro out of the courtroom.

Marlisa Ferreira states that she has reviewed the surveillance video, and that there were multiple subjects captured in the recording. She speaks about how the person who resembled Vegas Maunakea was not carrying anything to the car. Hans Hjertonsson states that Vegas Maunakea was positively identified by the investigators on the surveillance video. Jai Gohel reminds the court that Vegas Maunakea was an aider and an abettor in this situation. We are out of time for the morning session. Judge Zuniga seems upset about how long this hearing is taking. She instructs the bailiff to tell the jury that they will not have to come in this afternoon. This hearing is going to take all day. It is just another example why this trial is lasting forever.

Sincerely; William Thomas Jensen (Tom)




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