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Tulimasealii pleads not guilty to all charges

  • STAR-ADVERTISER

    UH football player Kennedy Tulimasealii before his arraignment in District Court on May 10.

University of Hawaii football player Kennedy Tulimasealii today pleaded not guilty to six criminal charges in Circuit Court.

The combined cases were assigned to Circuit Court Judge Christine Kuriyama for trial the week beginning Aug. 8.

Tulimasealii, 21, plans to plead no contest to the charges and ask Kuriyama for a deferral, according to his attorney, Michael Green. A deferral will give Tulimasealii an opportunity to avoid conviction and have the charges cleared from his criminal record if he stays out of trouble for a specified period of time.

The charges stem from four separate incidents involving a dispute between Tulimasealii and his 20-year-old former girlfriend. He was charged with damaging a car in late February, property damage on March 1, assault on April 11, and assault, resisting arrest and harassment on April 12. The property damage charge is a Class C felony because it involves costs exceeding $1,500. The assaults and resisting arrest are misdemeanors. The other two charges are petty misdemeanors.

Circuit Court Judge Richard Perkins granted Tulimasealii’s request to have the cases combined into one hearing.

Deputy Prosecutor Moanikeala Crowell agreed the cases should be heard together because “the conduct is domestic violence. That’s the crux of it.” Crowell said “domestic abuse is a broad term” that is applicable even though Tulimasealii and his accuser did not live together.

Green said he seeks a resolution before Aug. 8.

“Both sides want closure,” Green said. “Her lawyer wants closure. We want closure. We want to make sure her rights are respected (and) his rights are respected, and we’ll try to get a just result for everyone.”

Green said not contesting the charges is a “way emotions get to heal. There are always two sides to every story. I’d prefer emotions kind of calm down a little bit and go forward and everybody go on with their lives.”

Tulimasealii reportedly is attending anger-management classes.

Tulimasealii has been on suspension from football-related activities since his arrest on April 12. He has remained on scholarship, and is permitted to attend classes and study hall. He is enrolled in this summer session.

UH head coach Nick Rolovich declined to comment on Tulimasealii’s situation until the situation is resolved.

UH opens training camp on July 31.

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  • Throw the book at him to see if he’ll plead guilty to some of the charges so that the Prosecutors don’t have to work at all. Prosecutors like most attorneys are overloaded.

  • Someone like him could not play football because it is a team sport and anger is not part of the game. He needs to be responsible for his actions and pay the price for what he has done. If not corrected now he will always continue with this life style.

  • It seems like a lot of folks have tried Kennedy already without all the facts. Regardless of the result of this case, Kennedy will not be able let this thing ride off in the sunset. Regardless if he pays his due or not. I hope he benefits from his anger management classes and doesn’t cause him to be more polite when he is eventually allowed back on the field.

  • “The charges stem from four separate incidents involving a dispute between Tulimasealii and his 20-year-old former girlfriend. He was charged with damaging a car in late February, property damage on March 1, assault on April 11, and assault, resisting arrest and harassment on April 12.”

    This guy’s in serious denial !

    “….and ask Kuriyama for a deferral, according to his attorney, Michael Green. A deferral will give Tulimasealii an opportunity to avoid conviction and have the charges cleared from his criminal record if he stays out of trouble for a specified period of time.”

    The specified period-of-time should be while he’s enrolled at UH. His lawyer might claim it’s an “unreasonable” requirement.

  • One comment that was made is very interesting in that “who is paying the legal fees for Kennedy?” Michael Green is a high-price attorney and unless he is doing this pro bono, is the University athletic dept. paying the legal fees because it just can’t come from the family or is it???

  • I see special treatment here for this immature little boy in a big mans body. Six charges and he wants it’s all deferred so he doesn’t have a record. Yes indeed something smells fishy.

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