KEALAKEKUA — The second assailant in the violent 2016 rape of a woman at Old Kona Airport Park was sentenced up to 20 years in prison.
On Monday morning, Samuel Latrik, 19, was sentenced in 3rd Circuit Court after pleading guilty as charged in November to first-degree sexual assault, second-degree assault, kidnapping, third-degree assault and first-degree attempted sexual assault.
Latrik also pleaded no contest to second-degree robbery, first-degree terroristic threatening and first-degree sexual assault. The counts will be served concurrently and the Hawaii Paroling Authority will determine the minimum prison sentence.
“I’m thankful the majority of all this is almost over and that he’s locked up for a long time,” the victim said after the sentencing.
Latrik was one of two teens who accosted and sexually assaulted the woman on Sept. 3, 2016, on a soccer field at Old Airport, just north of the Kona Community Aquatics Center.
Tyron Sigrah, now 18, was the first of the two teens to be arrested and charged as an adult in November of 2017. Latrik was indicted in 3rd Circuit Court in January of 2018. Both men initially faced charges in juvenile court, however the judge waived their cases to adult court proceedings.
Sigrah was sentenced to 20 years maximum in September of 2018 on charges of first-degree sexual assault kidnapping, six years for second-degree robbery and three and half years for second-degree assault. The sentences are to be served concurrently. The Hawaii Paroling Authority issued an 11-year minimum term before he would be eligible for parole. Read the story here.
On Monday, Deputy Prosecutor Sheri Lawson argued against youthful offender status, which would allow Latrik to serve a maximum sentence of eight years due to the teen’s age at the time of the crime.
Lawson told the court the state feels strongly based on evidence that 20 years is appropriate for Latrik.
“The court has to make a finding that there’s no substantial danger to the community,” Lawson said. “The fact that this was committed in the community against a random person shows he’s not a good candidate for youthful offender.”
Lawson stated there were letters received by the court in support of Latrik, indicating the incident at Old Airport was a mistake.
“But this was not a mistake. This was a very deliberate and intentional choice to rape a woman in our community,” she said. “He made a very, very adult choice and he needs to face that consequence.”
Lawson added the case is not a life imprisonment case, believing concurrent sentences were appropriated.
“Nothing put forth by this court shows that he deserves a lesser sentence,” she said.
The victim did make a statement to the court.
“I know you read my impact statements and heard me speak before,” she stated. “I just want to reiterate how vicious the muscular one was. The suffocation, the continuous punches to my face.”
In previous testimony to the court, the victim didn’t know the teens and was only able to identify them as the skinny boy and the muscular boy, the latter a reference to Latrik. It was through DNA evidence that it was proven Sigrah and Latrik were the perpetrators.
The woman added to the court the continuous attacks on her that night made her question whether or not she would live.
“There’s really no words to express how this has affected my life,” the victim stated. “I’m still unemployed. I have night terrors.”
Latrik also prepared a short statement, which he read to the court.
“Words cannot explain the hurt and sorrow I feel in my part in that horrible night,” he said. “I hope someday that (victim) will be able to forgive me.”
Latrik went on to say that he takes full responsibility for his actions and asked the court to pass an appropriate sentence, considering “my lapse of judgment.”
Third Circuit Court Judge Robert D.S. Kim said the court was cognizant of the defendant’s young age.
“The court is also cognizant that this was a terrible crime,” Kim said. “What was done to that young lady was a horror story.”
The judge stated the court will find Latrik a danger to the community and not a candidate for youthful offender status. The 20-year maximum sentence was imposed.
“I want to say to the victim; you have been very poised, you have been very strong,” Kim said to the victim from the bench. “You will do well in life. Don’t let this pull you down.”
The judge added this case goes beyond what he’s seen as an attorney or a judge.
“In passing this sentence, I’m reminded of the Law of the Splintered Paddle. The women and children must be safe along the highway,” Kim said, adding the people in this community must be safe.
Latrik will receive credit for time served and will be required to register as a sex offender.
“That concludes this matter – I hope you will find peace,” Kim said to the victim before leaving the courtroom.
Latrik’s family was present during the sentencing. They declined comment after the hearing.
The Hawaii Paroling Authority has six months to set the minimum term limit from sentencing.
Sigrah is currently being held at Halawa Correctional Facility on Oahu. Latrik is at Hawaii Community Correctional Center in Hilo.