Landlord sentenced for taking items from missing tenant
WAILUKU, Hawaii (AP) — A Maui landlord was ordered to pay nearly $3,000 for taking items from the apartment of his pregnant tenant while police were investigating her disappearance.
Carly “Charli” Scott disappeared five years ago. Her ex-boyfriend Steven Capobianco is serving life in prison after he was convicted of her murder. Her body was never found.
The Maui News reports that Scott’s landlord Nafetalai Finau, 71, was sentenced Wednesday for taking her things, including a television and baby toys in 2014. He previously pleaded no contest to a reduced charge of third-degree theft.
In addition to restitution, he must perform 100 hours of community service and will be on probation for a year. He received credit for two days spent in jail.
“You broke the landlord-tenant code more times than I can count,” Judge Rhonda Loo told Finau. “You wanted to be paid for what she owed you. But it was bigger than that. There was a police investigation going on. There was a murder investigation going on.”
Finau said in a letter that he kept the items to try to get money owed for rent and repairs.
“When I look back at that time, knowing what I know now, I feel shame for my actions to the Scott family,” the letter said. “I added to your difficulty at a time that was already the most difficult in your life.”
Scott’s father, Robert Scott, flew to Maui from Seattle to help search for her in 2014. He said he had to negotiate with Finau to return his daughter’s things in exchange for rent that was due.
“I was taken aback by the lack of empathy,” Robert Scott said.
Information from: The Maui News, http://www.mauinews.com