$250K bail for Kona assault suspects

  • Lama Lauvao, left, Natisha Tautalatasi and Wesley Samoa make their first appearance Wednesday in District court for attempted murder charges. (Laura Ruminski/West Hawaii Today)

  • Defense attorney Matthew Sylva, second from left, represents Lama Lauvao, Wesley Samoa and Natisha Tautaltasi at their initial court appearance Wednesday in District Court for the charge of attempted murder. (Laura Ruminski/West Hawaii Today)
  • Defense attorney Matthew Sylva, second from left, represents Lama Lauvao, Wesley Samoa and Natisha Tautalatasi at their initial court appearance Wednesday in District Court for the charge of attempted murder. (Laura Ruminski/West Hawaii Today)

  • Defense attorney Matthew Sylva, left, represents Lama Lauvao, Natisha Tautaltasi and Wesley Samoa at their initial court appearance Wednesday in District Court for the charge of attempted murder. (Laura Ruminski/West Hawaii Today)
  • Wesley Samoa, charged with attempted murder, makes his first court appearance Wednesday in District Court. (Laura Ruminski/West Hawaii Today)

KEALAKEKUA — A preliminary hearing has been scheduled for Friday for the three suspects accused of beating a hotel security guard earlier this week.

Wesley Samoa, Lama Lauvao and Natisha Tautalatasi made their initial appearance Wednesday morning in District Court.


The three are charged with second-degree attempted murder in connection to a near-death beating about 12:30 Monday when they allegedly got into a verbal confrontation with a security guard while parked at Kona Seaside Hotel. According to Hawaii Police, the confrontation escalated into the three individuals physically assaulting the guard.

Because of the severity of his injuries, the 63-year-old victim was flown to The Queen’s Medical Center on Oahu for further treatment. As of press time Wednesday, he remained in critical condition.

During Wednesday’s hearing, defense counsel Matthew Sylva requested that the $250,000 bail be reduced for each of the defendants. Samoa, 30, of Kona, addressed Judge Margaret Masunaga in this request.

Samoa asked about getting supervised release. He agreed to be on house arrest to have the ability to go to and from work.

Deputy Prosecutor Chase Murray opposed the reduction in bail and supervised release, indicating the charge is serious and, if convicted, carries a long-term punishment, which makes him a potential flight risk.

Masunaga maintained bail at $250,000 for Samoa. However, she provided bail conditions if he did make bail, which were to check in with Hawaii Intake Service Center, check in with his attorney once a week and appear for all court appearances.

The judge added the condition that Samoa not go within 300 yards of Seaside Hotel or the victim.

Lauvao, 30, and Tautalatasi, 41, also appealed to Masunaga for supervised release or a reduction in bail as they both live in Honolulu and would like to continue to provide for their families as their cases move forward.

Again, the judge denied their requests and bail was maintained at $250,000. The same bail conditions applied to Samoa would be applied to Lauvao and Tautalatasi if they were to bail out.

Masunaga scheduled a preliminary hearing for each on Friday morning.

The courtroom was filled with family in support of Samoa as well as Lauvao and Tautalatasi. The family confirmed they three defendants are relatives.

After the hearing, Samoa’s mother, Ilaisa, said her son is a loving person.

“He’s a family man,” she said. “People have their moments.”

Ilaisa offered a “humble heart” to the security guard and his family.

“Our heart, it’s with him and his family,” she said. “We’re praying for the victim and the family that they have peace.”

Samoa’s brother agreed that what he did was terrible. “We all know this.” He added it doesn’t mean the family won’t be there to show their love and support.

Samoa’s sister added that they accept the process that he’s in, right now, so the family of the victim receives justice, too.

More details about the reported attack were released Wednesday by Hawaii Police. According to a press release, the security guard was responding to a loud noise complaint when he made contact with the three defendants as well as Mahealani Kanehailua, 33, of Kona.

The four were occupying a black SUV in the hotel’s parking lot.

According to the release, the three suspects physically assaulted the security guard who was seated in the hotel’s security golf cart, “pulling him from the vehicle onto the parking lot driveway, where the three alternated punching and kicking him, even after it appeared he was unconscious.”

The release indicates that Kona patrol officers responded to the scene and located the four individuals and eventually arrested them.

Kanehailua was arrested on suspicion of operating a vehicle while intoxicated.

After the incident Monday, the victim’s son posted an update of his father on Facebook: “Earlier today my Father was assaulted doing his job as a Security Guard and is currently on a ventilator. He just underwent surgery on his spinal cord in hopes to prevent swelling and in the future breathe again without a ventilator. This is a hard time for our family and hope no one has to go through this.”


He asked anyone with information to provide it to police. Detective David Matsushima has been assigned to the case. He can be reached at 326-4646, ext. 224, or via email at david.matsushima@hawaiicounty.gov. People can also call the department’s nonemergency line at 935-3311.

Attempts to reach the family directly were unsuccessful as of press time Wednesday.

  1. Servite Omak September 19, 2018 5:38 pm

    so if I stove in that monkeys head with a sledge hammer it would be me “having a moment”?

    1. Philip Brown September 20, 2018 11:50 pm

      Otherwise never bad,first time. Say your sorry.

  2. Buds4All September 19, 2018 6:08 pm


  3. PilauAunty September 19, 2018 6:22 pm

    They want to be released so that they can provide for their family? What about the victim’s family, who provides for them? Selfish… oh and precious mommy..he had a moment, whaatt?! what about all the other ‘moments’ he had, this ain’t his first rodeo with the police, it just keeps escalating lady, now their victim may not make it. Save it for people who care because I don’t. Lock’em away.

  4. Kaipo Wall September 19, 2018 6:47 pm

    This island is infested with some real human slime . Concealed carry , now !

    1. Du Mhan Yhu September 19, 2018 7:36 pm

      Add a “Stand your ground” law at the same time.

      Ridiculous that we should be rendered essentially defenseless against these creeps.

  5. Ernest T Bass September 19, 2018 7:26 pm

    the three together aren’t worth $1.00 and will cost $35,000 a year PER to keep them locked up/
    WORTHLESS is the word;
    Redemption ?…..Divine Spark of humanity?…..I don’t want to hear it.

  6. metalman808 September 19, 2018 8:25 pm

    Scum bags. Hawaii courts are failing the people. Just like our greedy politicians. What the f@ck is up with that.

  7. Graystash September 19, 2018 11:10 pm

    What a bunch of Slime balls !!! HANG EM HIGH !!!!!

  8. Sterling September 20, 2018 4:41 am

    There’s a high probability they will flee if they make bail. Look at their faces. They know it’s different this time.

  9. diverdave September 20, 2018 6:41 am

    What was the guard’s ethnicity? Was it also a hate crime?

    1. hpycmpr September 21, 2018 5:08 am

      He is a local Hawaiian.

  10. Du Mhan Yhu September 20, 2018 10:38 am

    both live in Honolulu and would like to continue to provide for their families as their cases move forward.

    Provide for their families? What about the guard? A real shame he could not have administered the taxpayer relief shots to rid us of these animals.

    WTH were they doing getting stoned or drunk in Kona after midnight, if they are so concerned about their families. Do they routinely travel from Honolulu to do this?

    Keep them locked up, this is just a lawyer scam to let them run free.

  11. TN September 20, 2018 1:59 pm

    Scumbags… they should be in prison for decades for this.

    Best case scenario they kill themselves and save taxpayers the expense of their incarceration.

  12. Goku September 20, 2018 5:18 pm

    3 things – 1. Every dollar this guy makes while on work release should go to the victim 2. The employer probably should terminate this guy before bad press impacts his business and 3. I’d double his bail if they’re trivializing this and calling this a moment.

    I hope the judge experiences this so called “moment” and sends him away for 40 years.

  13. Akamai September 20, 2018 8:04 pm

    1. If there was a truly regretful and repentant heart, acceptance of any and all charges would give evidence to such sincerity.

    2.Caring for family also means setting a Good example.

    3. These people have done wrong. The real question is how can you fix your mistake, not how to avoid or get out of the consequences.

    Genuine sincerity gives way for true forgiveness. I hope the best for my family, that they have peace.
    We all have obligations and struggles however, this was an awful thing that was done for which there is no excuse. My heart hurts for my uncle.

    While you are healthy today remember what has happened and feel sorry for what you have done.

    For those who hurt a life read and consider your actions.

    1. Mike Adams September 30, 2018 6:57 pm

      Your uncle is going to prison for a long time. life no parole

      1. Akamai October 2, 2018 8:40 pm

        My uncle is in the hospital. I think you misunderstood.

        1. Mike Adams October 2, 2018 9:35 pm


  14. Philip Brown September 20, 2018 11:54 pm

    I hope the victim can have a full recovery but he is going to hurt for the rest of his life. He was working nights? Just doing his job like he was supposed to do. Best wishes

  15. hpycmpr September 21, 2018 5:19 am

    Something so violent happening to an innocent civilian in the heart of Kona? If word gets out that these losers ever see the light of day again (we will make sure it does), local tourism will take a hit. Tourists go to Hawaii instead of Mexico for a reason. Lock’em up, throw away the key and give them 10 minutes alone with this sweet man’s loved ones. While we’re at it, lock that mom up for breeding.

  16. Jon Neet September 21, 2018 7:41 am

    The guard must have really been beaten severly to have to go through spinal surgery. May these thugs rot in jail.

    1. Mike Adams October 2, 2018 9:38 pm

      they broke his neck

  17. JTTRI September 21, 2018 12:17 pm

    Just more inbreed Poly’s

  18. ghost September 23, 2018 10:24 pm

    If the victim can not breathe without a ventilator, I say Hawaii needs to bring on capital punishment. If found guilty, throw the defendants into the Kilauea caldera or fissure 8.

    1. Mike Adams October 2, 2018 9:37 pm

      no death penalty in Hawaii. more than likely they’ll get life no parole

  19. blunt TrUth September 24, 2018 2:45 am

    Judging from these 20+ comments, residents are fed up with the violent moke-types. Once quaint, Kona has spiraled into an unsafe haven of tweakers and miscreants who have outnumbered law enforcement for some time. These defendants beat a man down, on film, on private property. Clearly not very bright!

  20. THE ALMIGHTY MIKEY ESCO!!! September 30, 2018 10:15 am


    1. Mike Adams September 30, 2018 6:58 pm

      more than likely they were drunk but no excuse for that

  21. jay September 30, 2018 2:25 pm

    They went way to far in the assault. Especially the female. She attacked again as he lay helpless on the ground. It was like she was going crazy,

  22. Mike Adams September 30, 2018 6:48 pm

    Wesley is a loving humble person? wtf? The security guard’s neck is broken and he’s on a ventilator

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