ID Theft Suspect Pleads No Contest

Jonathan Saatkamp
Jonathan Saatkamp
Deputy Prosecutor Chris Van Marter
Deputy Prosecutor Chris Van Marter

HONOLULU (KHNL) - A wanted man, who was captured last year when he pretended to be a prominent Honolulu attorney, gave up his court fight Friday. Jonathan Saatkamp changed his plea on several dozen charges.

For a man charged with 41 criminal counts, throwing in the towel takes some time.

Prosecutors say Saatkamp stole people's identities, and turned their financial lives upside-down.

"He stole personal information," Chris Van Marter, Honolulu deputy prosecutor, said. "And then he started forging checks and withdrawal slips, and withdrawing money from the victims' accounts."

But his luck ran out, when he pretended to be one of the more recognizable attorneys in the state.

"It's absolutely awful," William McCorriston, identity theft victim, said in September. "When your private financial documents get stolen, there's no end to headaches."

"(Saatkamp) was using roughly an eight-ball of methamphetamine a day," Van Marter said. "And to support that habit, he was committing property crimes."

All that, and he still wonders if probation is an option.

"There's no chance of being let out on probation?" the defendant asked.

"That is what the court is saying," the judge responded.

Saatkamp pleaded no contest to 40 felonies and one petty misdemeanor. The most serious charge against him is identity theft in the second degree, a class B felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison.

But because of his criminal history, the repeat offender faces the 10 years as a mandatory minimum.

"Caused a lot of financial damage, a lot of inconvenience and a lot of headaches for his victims," Van Marter said. "So we're going to be seeking substantially more prison than the 10-year minimum."

Saatkamp is scheduled to be sentenced June 21st.