Hilo man arrested for assault with a sledge hammer

BIG ISLAND (HawaiiNewsNow) - Police have arrested a 19-year-old man in connection with an assault with a sledge hammer that occurred in Panaewa on March 25.

Patrol officers responded to a report of an unconscious male at about 4 p.m. March 25 a home on Auwae Road in Hilo.

Police and fire department personnel found a 55-year-old man with a severe head injury. The victim was taken to the Hilo Medical Center and was initially listed in serious condition. He was transferred to Queen's Medial Center on Oahu via air ambulance and has since been upgraded to stable condition following surgery.

Police arrested Tevita Moala at the scene for an unrelated warrant and he was being held in the East Hawaii Detention Center while detectives conduct an investigation into this incident, which has been classified as a first degree assault.

After conferring with Big Island prosecutors, detectives charged Moala for first degree assault and his bail is set at $25,000. He is being held in the police cellblock pending his initial court appearance Monday.

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