Mountain View man indicted for alleged rape

A Hilo grand jury indicted a 24-year-old Mountain View man for an alleged rape in Hilo in late July.

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A Hilo grand jury indicted a 24-year-old Mountain View man for an alleged rape in Hilo in late July.

The six-count indictment charges Thomas A. Marsello with three counts of first-degree sex assault, plus kidnapping, third-degree sex assault and fourth-degree sex assault.

A bench warrant was issued for Marsello’s arrest. Bail was set at $150,000.

Court records indicate Marsello is free on $30,000 bail on three of the alleged offenses. He was awaiting a preliminary hearing when the indictment was returned. Marsello signed a waiver of extradition and surrendered his passport to Hilo District Court, according to online minutes from an Aug. 11 hearing.

According to the indictment, on July 27, Marsello “intentionally or knowingly restrained” the alleged victim, an adult woman, “with intent to inflict bodily injury upon” her “or subject (her) to a sexual offense, thereby committing the act of kidnapping.”

The document also states Marsello “knowingly subjected” the woman to three acts of sexual penetration and another of sexual contact “by strong compulsion.” It also alleges Marsello exposed himself to the woman under circumstances which his conduct “was likely to alarm” the woman or put her “in fear of bodily injury.”

A police spokeswoman said the alleged attack took place in Piihonua but would provide no other details, referring the Tribune-Herald to the Juvenile Aid Section.

Lt. Lucille Melemai of Juvenile Aid also declined to answer questions, including if Marsello and the alleged victim know each other, citing victim confidentiality.

Under standard sentencing guidelines, first-degree sex assault and kidnapping are both Class A felonies punishable by up to 20 years imprisonment. Third-degree sex assault is a Class C felony punishable by up to five years imprisonment, and fourth-degree sex assault is a misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail.

The indictment, however, seeks an extended term of imprisonment if Marsello is convicted and sentenced for two or more felonies.

That sentence could be life in prison with the possibility of parole if he is convicted of Class A felonies.

The document states “an extended term of imprisonment is necessary for the protection of the public.”

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A check of court records turned up no prior convictions for Marsello.

Email John Burnett at jburnett@hawaiitribune-herald.com.

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