Deputy sheriff pleads not guilty to sex assault of inmate

Benjamin Fonoti
Benjamin Fonoti

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - A state deputy sheriff entered a plea of not guilty Thursday morning to charges that he sexually assaulted a female detainee.

Benjamin Fonoti, 30, has been with the sheriff's department for three years and is stationed at the district court cellblock.

He was indicted last week for second- and third-degree sexual assault.  The indictment charges that on October 10th he forced a female detainee to give him oral sex.

A source says investigators have Fonoti's DNA to help prove the case. He has posted $11,000 bail.

Trial begins the week of June 18.

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