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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Thursday, June 8, 2006

Kaimuki rapist gets 30-year sentence

By Ken Kobayashi
Advertiser Courts Writer

David Baldaino last year threatened to kill a woman in her 80s before raping her. Prosecutors said he also assaulted someone when he was 5 years old.

BRUCE ASATO | The Honolulu Advertiser

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The 86-year-old woman thought she would be enjoying the sunset years of her life.

Instead, a neighbor broke into her Kaimuki home while she slept before dawn on March 12 last year. The intruder got into her bed, threatened to kill her if she screamed, cut her hand with a pocket knife and raped her.

"Your flagrant act has imprisoned both of us," the woman wrote in a letter read in court yesterday for the sentencing of the rapist, David Baldaino.

"Mine is a prison of the mind because I can't erase the memory of what you did, and yours is the actual place where you will spend your days."

For the 38-year-old Baldaino, it could be imprisonment for 30 years.

Circuit Judge Richard Perkins imposed the maximum 30-year-sentence under a plea agreement in which Baldaino earlier this year pleaded guilty to burglary, kidnapping and first-degree sexual assault in the attack on the woman.

Also under the agreement, Baldaino pleaded guilty to failing to provide his address to the state's sex-offender registry. Baldaino, a mechanic, has a 1989 sexual assault conviction on Kaua'i.

During the sentencing hearing yesterday, city Deputy Prosecutor Lori Wada called Baldaino a sexual predator whose criminal history includes assaulting a victim when he was 5 years old and sexually assaulting his wife.

She said the Kaimuki woman found it too difficult to show up in court yesterday.

"Her entire life has been shattered because of what he had done to her," Wada said.

The woman is reluctant to answer the door and installed motion detectors and locks at her home, including her bedroom door, she said.

"Every night I barricade myself inside my bedroom and wake with a start at any sound," Wada read from the woman's statement. "Then come the anxious sleepless hours as I recall your violation upon me."

Wada said Baldaino raped the woman because his wife refused to have sex with him. Baldaino targeted another neighbor, but she wasn't home. He chose the woman, then 85, because she was "weak and vulnerable," the deputy prosecutor said.

Wada later said during the attack, Baldaino cut a kitchen window screen to get into the home where the woman lived alone. He got into her bed and put a pillow case over her head, she said.

According to the deputy prosecutor, the woman begged: "I have a heart problem. I'm 85 years old. Why do you want to do this to me?"

Baldaino replied, "If you scream, I'll kill you," according to Wada, then cut the woman's right hand as he raped her.

Baldaino yesterday declined to say anything to the judge, but his lawyer, Deputy Public Defender Debra Loy, said her client wanted the judge to consider a statement he submitted.

In the statement read by Loy, Baldaino said he apologizes to the victim.

"I can only hope and pray that she can put behind her the pain and undue stress my actions have caused and that my incarceration and willingness to address the issues and problems of my life that led to my behavior will in some way offer her a form of closure and peace," Loy read.

The Hawai'i Paroling Authority later will determine how much time Baldaino must serve before he is eligible for release on parole.

Loy later said it's too soon to say what she will recommend to the board.

Wada said she'll recommend Baldaino serve the entire 30 years.

"He's not going to change," she said. "He's very, very dangerous."

Reach Ken Kobayashi at kkobayashi@honoluluadvertiser.com.