Court denies man’s request to get out of jail early

The Maui News

WAILUKU — A Wailuku man is serving a six-month jail term for firing shots in a Spreckelsville neighborhood six years ago, after a judge denied the defendant’s request to be released from jail last month.

Richard Garvis, 52, had pleaded no contest to first-degree reckless endangering for the shooting July 29, 2011, on Stable Road.

Police were called to the neighborhood after residents reported hearing shots near a residence at about 3:15 a.m. Police Special Response Team officers and negotiators were called to the scene before two men left the residence about five hours later, according to police.

In addition to serving the jail term, Garvis also was ordered to perform 200 hours of community service as part of four years’ probation when he was sentenced Nov. 9.

During a Dec. 21 court hearing, his lawyer, Ben Lowenthal, asked the court to suspend the remaining jail time for Garvis so he could be released. Garvis is a caregiver for his girlfriend’s two children, Lowenthal said.

He said a plea agreement between the defense and prosecution had recommended no further jail time for Garvis.

Second Circuit Judge Rhonda Loo said she had considered the facts of the case in ordering the jail term for Garvis.

“I remember the facts of this case and I remember the defendant’s history as well,” Loo said. “Over 20 shots were fired in the middle of the night in a residential neighborhood in Spreckelsville.

“A lot of the neighbors were very, very upset. They were scared, they were frightened. They were concerned about why someone in a residential neighborhood was shooting off bullets in the wee hours of the morning.”

After a standoff with police, Garvis eventually surrendered. In the residence, police found firearms, as well as “lots of ammunition, lots of drugs,” Loo said.

Garvis said he was arrested four times in five and a half years.

“I did not fire that gun,” he said in court. “It was in my father’s possession in his room. I did not want to put him through a trial. I took a plea because the state offered me no contest, I was able to move on with my life.”

Garvis said he has supported a family, including children, from the Philippines. “I have been a good citizen,” he said.

Loo said that Garvis, as a felon, “knows he’s not supposed to be in possession of firearms.”

“He’s lucky he’s not in prison based on his criminal history,” Loo said.

According to the Hawaii Criminal Justice Data Center, Garvis was convicted of first-degree terroristic threatening in 1998 on Oahu.