Man avoids jail time for stealing vehicles while on probation

The Maui News

WAILUKU — A man who was on probation when he was arrested in two stolen-vehicle cases was placed on probation again last week.

Aaron Wilsey, 26, of Wailuku was released from jail after spending about two years incarcerated while his cases were pending.

“He has been in a long timeout from the community, and he is ready right now to reintegrate,” said Deputy Public Defender Tyler Stevenson.

While Wilsey asked to be sentenced to probation, the prosecution had sought a prison sentence for the defendant, who previously had been placed on probation for second-degree arson and third-degree promoting of a dangerous drug.

“What’s telling is that while on probation, he continued to reoffend,” said Deputy Prosecutor Shelly Miyashiro.

In addition to accumulating new arrests, Wilsey failed to report to his probation officer and didn’t follow through with obtaining substance abuse treatment, employment or education, Miyashiro said.

“The defendant has not shown he’s willing to turn his life around,” she said. “He’s not shown he would be receptive to treatment.”

In two 2017 criminal cases, Wilsey had pleaded no contest to two counts of unauthorized control of a propelled vehicle, resisting arrest and third-degree promoting of a detrimental drug. The stolen vehicles were a 2017 Honda motorcycle and a 2004 Suzuki Colt motorcycle, according to court records.

Wilsey said he wanted to continue his education to become a journeyman carpenter. “It will be different this time,” he said.

Second Circuit Judge Richard Bissen asked why Wilsey hadn’t made the changes while he was on probation before.

“My work ethic,” Wilsey replied. “When I wouldn’t work, I would stay home and just be distracted.”

When Bissen asked why he needed the stolen vehicles, Wilsey said it was for transportation.

The judge asked if Wilsey had thought that the owners also needed the vehicles for transportation.

“At the time, I did not,” Wilsey said. “My mind was clouded by the substances I was on at the time. I was not thinking. I didn’t think of that at all.”

Bissen said he thought what Wilsey said was true.

“You certainly weren’t thinking of others,” the judge told Wilsey. “You were being selfish and thinking of yourself.”

Bissen said he wasn’t sentencing Wilsey to prison in his latest cases because he would have to serve a 10-year prison term for his second-degree arson conviction.

“For the new offenses, I don’t think you deserve a 10-year prison sentence,” Bissen told Wilsey. “While you’re not a great candidate for probation, I also don’t think you should go to prison for 10 years for taking this motorcycle and this car while on probation.”

But the judge said Wilsey would face a 10-year prison term if he again reoffends while on probation.

“Then all the words you just said are empty,” Bissen said.

Wilsey was also ordered to pay restitution totaling $5,634.