Man put on 1-year probation after baby luau assault
Victim calls the punishment ‘one slap on the wrist’
WAILUKU — A Molokai man was placed on one year’s probation Wednesday for an assault at a baby luau last year that left another man with injuries including a traumatic brain injury.
Roycee Calairo, 24, was ordered to perform 200 hours of community service and complete anger management treatment as part of his sentence.
Originally charged with first-degree assault, Calairo had pleaded no contest to a lesser charge of third-degree assault of Brian Keohuloa.
The two men had been drinking at the first birthday party for Calairo’s daughter on Jan. 6, 2018, at the Mitchell Pauole Center before Keohuloa was asked to leave the gathering following an argument with Calairo’s father, said Deputy Prosecutor Annalisa Bernard Lee.
She said Keohuloa was leaving when Calairo tackled him from behind.
At first, no one wanted to say what happened, Bernard Lee said. “Basically everyone told the police they found him unconscious on the ground and maybe he fell,” she said.
Keohuloa was taken to the hospital, where he was found with a skull fracture, bleeding in his brain and a serious concussion “which put him at a substantial risk of death,” Bernard Lee said.
She said Keohuloa was diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury and dislocated shoulder.
When a police detective did more investigation, he found a witness who saw Calairo run in what appeared to be a full sprint toward Keohuloa and tackle him, Bernard Lee said. The witness said that caused Keohuloa “to spin around and have his head slammed on the sidewalk,” Bernard Lee said.
She said the witness reported hearing “a loud thump,” which she believed was Keohuloa’s head being slammed on the sidewalk.
Calairo was allowed to plead no contest to the reduced charge because, after reviewing the case, Bernard Lee said “the state now did not believe the defendant intentionally or knowingly meant to cause that kind of serious bodily injury when he tackled him.”
Calairo told police, “I nevah mean for that happen,” said his attorney, Thomas Otake.
“It was really unfortunate,” Otake said. “It was supposed to be a day everyone would remember as a good time.”
He said Calairo, who has no prior criminal record, didn’t want to create more animosity by going to trial.
Calairo apologized to Keohuloa and his family members who were in the courtroom gallery Wednesday.
Otake said Keohuloa was an “uninvited guest and was calling out some of the guests to fight.”
Bernard Lee said Keohuloa and his girlfriend were guests at the party, along with many of their family members.
“Molokai is a small island, but I just don’t understand about the consequences,” Keohuloa said in court. “I had one fracture and internal bleeding.
. . . I could have been dead.
“The consequences he getting — probation is just one slap on the wrist.”
After Otake said Calairo could return to his previous job that involved going onto military bases if he could keep the misdemeanor assault conviction off his record, 2nd Circuit Judge Rhonda Loo offered Calairo the option of receiving a deferral if he served a 60-day jail term.
Calairo declined “because of his family and current job,” Otake said.
As part of his probation, Calairo was ordered not to consume alcohol or illegal drugs. He was ordered to write a letter, to be turned in to his probation officer, apologizing to Keohuloa.
Calairo was ordered to have no contact with Keohuloa.
* Lila Fujimoto can be reached at email@example.com.