AG to seek 50-year sentence for man convicted of assaulting special needs victim with a bat

Attorney General Douglas Moylan wants Judge Vernon Perez to sentence Joiner Soram to more than 50 years in prison for assaulting a man with special needs.

Mr. Soram was convicted Friday of the aggravated assault of a man with a mental health disorder. According to the original charging document, on December 14, 2022, Mr. Soram and his friend were walking along Route 10 Mangilao across Pacific Tyre, when they came across the victim, who was walking in the opposite direction. Soram was carrying a baseball bat.

Mr. Soram hit the victim “with the baseball bat two to three times in the right upper thigh area while [the other defendant in the case] grabbed [the victim] from behind and held onto him,” the charging document states.

The now-convicted felon then robbed the disabled man of $20 and his G-Shock watch before fleeing the scene. A witness followed Mr. Soram, and eventually led police to him.

“The defendant now faces a potential prison sentence of over 50 years in jail, which the AG’s Office shall be seeking from the judge,” Mr. Moylan said in a news release Friday. “The verdict was another victory by this office and its prosecutors against violence against us. It was because of Good Samaritan law abiding neighbors in our community that the Jury heard the evidence needed to convict Defendant Joiner Soram.”

This was not Mr. Soram’s first arrest; and likely would have been behind bars the day he assaulted the disabled man if the previous attorney general had fought effectively for Soram’s detention in jail.

On December 31, 2021, police were called to KFC in Tamuning to remove Mr. Soram from the premises. According to the magistrates report in criminal felony case 00002-22, Mr. Soram smelled of alcohol and was shouting vulgarities at KFC employees. A witness told police that when he was asked to leave, “he became violent and asked other employees to fight.”

Mr. Soram allegedly took a “fighting stance toward police,” when the officers arrived at the scene.

He was “arrested for disorderly conduct and public drunkenness,” according to the report. “During the arrest, [Soram] became combative with police by kicking Officer Tiffanie Rodriguez on her leg when he was placed inside the patrol vehicle. [Soram] also kicked Officer Dodd multiple times striking his right had and forearm.”

Mr. Soram was charged on January 2, 2022 with felony assault of a police officer, but was later released from jail. The magistrates report in 2022 mentioned that he was on pre-trial release for a crime allegedly committed earlier in 2021, criminal misdemeanor case 0299-21.

“This new AG’s Office has developed trial teams of experienced prosecutors willing and capable to put the bad guys behind bars to protect us, punish the criminals and deter against future crimes by asking for and hopefully getting tough sentences,” Mr. Moylan said.

If sentenced to 50 years in prison, Mr. Soram will be 80 years old by the time he is released, if he lives that long.

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