Home robbery suspects change pleas in court


POSTED: Thursday, August 13, 2009

Three more defendants have decided not to go to trial for an armed home-invasion robbery in Aliamanu last summer that left a man paralyzed from the waist down from a gunshot wound.

Kiara Garlasa Valdez, 19, and brothers Kerry Khamsouk, 18, and Kevin Khamsouk, 20, withdrew their not guilty pleas in state court yesterday.

Valdez pleaded guilty to being an accomplice to first-degree burglary.

Kerry and Kevin Khamsouk each pleaded no contest to first-degree burglary, two counts of first-degree robbery, three counts of kidnapping and six counts of using a firearm to commit the crimes.

John Matt Rasalan, 18, pleaded guilty to burglary, robbery and kidnapping Tuesday.

That leaves just Nicholas Nichols, 19, to stand trial later this month for attempted second-degree murder, robbery, kidnapping, burglary and related firearm charges.

Unlike Rasalan, Valdez and the Khamsouks do not have plea agreements with the state.

His agreement requires Rasalan to testify as a prosecution witness at trial. The lawyers for Valdez and the Khamsouks said their clients will refuse to testify if called as witnesses by citing their constitutional right against self-incrimination.

Without plea deals, the Khamsouks are eligible for a maximum 11 life prison terms with the possibility for parole plus 20 years when they are sentenced in October. Valdez is eligible for a maximum 10-year prison term.