Sunday, Sept. 24, 2023|
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A 33-year-old Waimea man is accused of sexually assaulting a minor girl over a four-month period.
A Kona grand jury last week returned an indictment charging Kau Paio, also known as Kau Pacheco, with 10 counts of first-degree sexual assault.
The offenses are alleged to have taken place between August 2022 and Jan. 1 this year, and the victim — who was born in 2008 and is identified only by her initials in the court document — was less than 14 years old at the time of two of the alleged incidents, and 14 at the time of the other alleged offenses.
Force is not alleged, but the victim has not reached the age of consent, and Paio is more than five years older than the victim and not legally married to the minor, according to the indictment.
All of the offenses are alleged to have occurred in South Kohala, according to the document.
A bench warrant issued with the indictment set Paio’s bail at $100,000.
Paio, who was arrested Thursday, appeared in custody Friday before Kona Circuit Judge Wendy DeWeese and pleaded not guilty to all charges.
DeWeese maintained Paio’s bail and set trial for May 16.
Paio was previously charged with three of the alleged offenses, all alleged to have taken place on New Year’s Day. He had appeared in South Kohala District Court on those charges, which were dropped once the indictment occurred.
The original charges were dropped on Wednesday because of the indictment, which moves the case from district to circuit court.
First-degree sexual assault is a Class A felony punishable by 20 years imprisonment. upon conviction.
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