Tearful Witness Account of Deadly Halloween Party

By: Auburn Hutton Email
By: Auburn Hutton Email

New details are out regarding the triple homicide that took place at a Halloween party late last year. 19-year-old Samisoni Taukitoku is accused of shooting and killing three at that party.

A Washoe County grand jury heard testimony from 12 witnesses, who gave detailed accounts of what happened.

The Washoe County District Attorney says-a says it's a procedure used when the witnesses are most likely to break down emotionally. It's a secret proceeding, with no reporters, no judge, and no bystanders. The DA says it's the best way to get witnesses to speak candidly and openly.

A 239 page document included testimony from all 12 witnesses, each of them with accounts of what they saw and heard at the deadly Halloween Party.

Witnesses painted a dark picture of the defendant, describing his "evil smirk," and the moments he shot his gun into a frightened crowd. They accuse Taukitoku and a group of other Pacific Islanders of crashing the Halloween bash, picking fights, and spending only minutes at the home before taking the the lives of three of their good friends.

Psychotherapist Tom Lavin says violent behavior, like what was described by witnesses, is all too common. He says two types of people perpetuate violence. One type is a person who feels threatened, mentally or physically, and then feels the need to fight back.

"There are other people who have what might be called anti-social mentality where, for them, life is cheap and the ego is what's most important. They use violence to dominate other people," said Lavin.

Lavin says he can't speculate on what type of person Taukitoku is...but the grand jury testimony included details that could put a spin on the trial. It shows another party-goer also had a gun, and fired it straight up into the air, after the killings took place. Another witness admits to hitting Taukitoku with a shovel, after Taukitoku had shot someone.

The prosecutor in the case, Dan Greco says defense attorneys will call upon witnesses at the trial that will contradict the accounts of those who testified during the Grand Jury.

"So far, the public has only been exposed to one side of the story. Although I full intend to convict Mr. Taukitoku of homicide, there is another side. I ask people to withhold final judgment until all the facts come out at the trial," warned Greco.

Greco also mentioned the fact that a defense attorney will say that eye-witness accounts are sometimes unreliable. In this case, there are over 100 witnesses, so he thinks the chances of hearing inconsistencies during witness testimonies is very high. That fact alone could lead to a very lengthy murder trial.

Taukitoku is scheduled for an arraignment Friday morning. At that point, a trial date will be set.


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