Man sentenced in relative’s stabbing

WAILUKU – A man who was on probation when he stabbed a relative at a Kahului residence last year has been sentenced to a one-year jail term and five years’ probation.

Steven Jakubczak, 50, could be released from jail after nine months if he enters a residential drug treatment program, as part of his sentence imposed July 24.

“Getting clean and sober is just a starting point,” 2nd Circuit Judge Joseph Cardoza told Jakubczak. “You’ve got to learn to be open and honest with yourself.

“You’ve done a lot of positive things for people – that’s great. It’s time to do something for yourself.”

Jakubczak had pleaded no contest to second-degree assault for the June 14, 2012, stabbing of a 24-year-old man.

Police said the victim was taken to Maui Memorial Medical Center, where he was treated for a 1-inch laceration to his right abdomen and a three-quarter-inch puncture to his left thigh. He and Jakubczak had been involved in an argument that led to a physical altercation before Jakubczak pulled out the knife, police said.

In court, Jakubczak apologized.

“I do have a drug problem,” he said. “I’ll try my best to do the right thing.”

Saying he has a bad heart, Jakubczak said, “I can’t afford to do drugs anymore.”

Deputy Public Defender Shelly Miyashiro said Jakubczak, a military veteran, had received counseling for post-traumatic stress disorder for the first time in 20 years while he had been on probation. He was going to regular court review hearings.

“He was trying to get his life together,” she said.

After being incarcerated following his latest arrest, he recently helped stop a cellmate who tried to hang himself, Miyashiro said. “That shows what kind of person he is,” she said.

Deputy Prosecutor Kim Whitworth said the prosecution agreed to a deal recommending probation and the jail term for Jakubczak because the case involved a family member and because of the possibility that Jakubczak would raise an issue of self-defense.

Both the victim and Jakubczak’s mother, who live in the home where the stabbing occurred, don’t want contact with Jakubczak and “indicated it’s been such a wonderful break not having Mr. Jakubczak living in the house,” Whitworth said.

While Jakubczak was in the home, his mother stayed mostly in her small room, even cooking food on a hot plate, Whitworth said.

“She felt like a prisoner in her home,” the deputy prosecutor said.

Whitworth said letters from Jakubczak’s doctor and church members indicated that he wasn’t honest with them about his problems.

“This isn’t just issues,” she said. “This is a person who is addicted to methamphetamine, who’s had a tremendous amount of help from the court and continues to use. He drug-tested positive every time he was tested by the Maui Intake Service Center or his probation officer.”

Cardoza followed the plea agreement in sentencing Jakubczak.

Whitworth said Jakubczak still owes $50,000 in restitution after being placed on probation in April 2012 for the theft two years earlier of jewelry from a Haiku residence where he had been working. He had pleaded no contest to second-degree burglary and second-degree theft in that case.