A man who faced a manslaughter charge in relation to an incident involving his wife has been jailed for two years and 10 months.
Isaako Taumaloto, 49, of Saoluafata, had faced one charge of manslaughter.
The decision was handed down by Supreme Court Justice Lei’ataulesa Daryl Clarke on Wednesday afternoon.
Prosecution was Lealofioamoa Mamaia of the Attorney General’s Office while defense counsel was Alex Su’a.
According to the police summary of facts, on 2 May 2017, in between 7am and 10am, the defendant was with his wife at their home at Saoluafata.
His wife (deceased) was scolding their children for not washing up and for messing up the house.
The defendant heard what his wife was saying to their children so he told her off.
They both then became involved in a verbal argument.
In the defendant’s pre-sentence report, he told the probation that his wife said the solution for their children was to hit their heads with a machete.
He also said that she swore at him.
According to the summary of facts, the defendant became enraged and slapped his wife’s face.
As a result, she fell down the concrete steps sustaining injuries to her left upper brow, head injuries and scratches on her body.
He told the probation officer that he apologized to her and had breakfast with her, but 30 minutes later she started complaining of her head hurting.
He arranged for an ambulance to take her to the hospital.
According to reports from the hospital, the cause of her death was because of a left head subdural hematoma resulting from blunt force trauma. In other words it was internal bleeding to her brain.
In reading out the aggravating features, Justice Leiataualesa took into account that the incident occurred in their home.
“The aggravating features of the offending are that assault is the result of his wife’s death and domestic violence,” he told the defendant.
“The offending was in the facility of his children
“The breach of trust involving him assaulting his wife was done within their home.
“Her death has had a devastating tragic on her family.
“It has also left the children without a mother.”
Justice Leiataualesa added the death of the defendant’s wife was a tragedy for the deceased’s family, her children and the defendant himself.
“The tragedy is a result of an act of domestic violence.
“You did not intend to kill your wife but your action has led to her death.
“This will be a burden to carry for the rest of your life.”
During Justice Leiataualesa’s decision, his starting point was five years.
He deducted six months for Taumaloto’s remorse, six months for his previous good character and nine months for the ifoga and reconciliation to the family of the deceased and 11 months for his guilty plea to the charge of manslaughter.
“You are convicted and sentenced to two years and 10 months imprisonment.”