Victim's Family Sheds Tears as Murderer Sentenced - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Victim's Family Sheds Tears as Murderer Sentenced

Ronante Aquino Ronante Aquino
Zenaida Dumaslan Zenaida Dumaslan
Vic Dumaslan Vic Dumaslan

By Minna Sugimoto

HONOLULU (KHNL) -- An argument over money leads to murder. Monday, an Oahu man received his punishment for stabbing his girlfriend to death last year.

With sadness in his eyes, Vic Dumaslan prepares to see the man he trusted with his fun-loving cousin, Zenaida Dumaslan.

"This man, we welcomed him, accepted him in our family," he said. "He's been coming to our gatherings, family gatherings."

But Ronante Aquino betrayed that trust in July 2006, when he stabbed his girlfriend to death in her Pearl City home. Prosecutors say the 39-year-old mother of four had 40 to 50 stab wounds and cuts.

"The Dumaslan family is very frustrated and angered what this man did to our cousin," Vic Dumaslan, victim's cousin, said. "Big question mark is why. Why this man did such thing."

Through his interpreter and his attorney, Aquino explains he was drunk when he attacked Dumaslan.

"She was telling me bad words," the interpreter translated.

"Basically your honor, this is an argument that started about money," Darcia Forester, deputy public defender, said.

The judge calls the murder an incredibly selfish act, before sentencing Aquino to life in prison with the possibility of parole.

The victim's family is helping her youngest child cope. Little JC was home at the time of the attack.

"Probably saw and heard things that no one, no one much less a five-year-old, should have to see, hear or experience," Rom Trader, deputy prosecutor, said.

The judge also ordered Aquino to pay $4,000 in restitution to the family for funeral expenses. The Hawaii parole board will decide how much time he must serve before he's eligible for parole.

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