Man gets life term
for stabbing wife


Tuesday, Feb. 17, 2003

>> Deputy public defender William Bagasol represented Florencio Garperio, a Kalihi man sentenced to a life term with parole for killing his wife. A Page A4 article in Thursday's early edition incorrectly identified Garperio's attorney as William Domingo, a former state public defender.

The Honolulu Star-Bulletin strives to make its news report fair and accurate. If you have a question or comment about news coverage, call Editor Frank Bridgewater at 529-4791 or email him at

A Kalihi man was sentenced to mandatory life with parole for stabbing his wife to death in September 2001 because he believed she was pregnant and cheating on him.

Florencio Garperio, 54, asked the court yesterday for leniency, saying, "I didn't know what I was doing."

He said he would be willing to serve time in prison, but not for more than 10 years.

Circuit Judge Richard Perkins, who had no discretion in the matter, ordered Garperio to begin serving his sentence immediately. Perkins also rejected Garperio's motion for a new trial.

At trial, the defense did not dispute Garperio stabbed his wife, but argued that he was under an extreme mental and emotional disturbance and should be convicted of the lesser offense of manslaughter.

Garperio testified he had no recollection of what happened and only learned that his wife was dead and that he was responsible when he returned home later that day.

Prosecutors said there was no evidence that Mercy Garperio was pregnant or having an affair.

Yesterday, deputy public defender William Domingo argued that Garperio's right to a fair trial was compromised by the ineffective assistance of previous defense counsel, Dale Bennett, before and during the trial.

Bennett could not be reached for comment.

Perkins ruled, however, that Bennett's alleged lack of skill and diligence did not substantially affect the merits of the extreme mental and emotional disturbance defense.

Deputy Prosecutor Maurice Arrisgado, who opposed the motion for a new trial, argued that there was no evidence to support the defense.


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