Thursday, July 24, 2014

VIDEO: Rosal Gets 7 Years After Pleading Guilty in Masnayon Beating; Cameron Forgives Him

Guam News - Guam News

Guam - It was an emotional day in court for the family of Cameron Masnayon, the young man who barely survived a heinous beating in March of last year.

The man found guilty of  beating Masnayon, Michael Rosal, was sentenced to 7 years—the maximum allowed under the plea deal. And for the first time since his brutal beating, Cameron appeared in court and spoke directly to his perpetrator.

Tears welled up in the eyes of many who attended the sentencing of Michael Rosal, the man who beat Cameron Masnayon with a baseball bat, causing substantial and traumatic brain and facial injuries that continue to require Cameron to undergo rehabilitative therapy today.

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Rosal’s defense attorney, Louie Yanza, fought to have his client be sentenced to minimum prison terms allowed under his client’s plea deal. Rosal, for the first time since March 18, 2012, spoke to Cameron and his family.

In his statement before he was sentenced, Rosal told Judge Arthur Barcinas that he was willing to accept whatever sentence he’s given. He asked for forgiveness from Cameron and his family and explained to the court that this is not the person he is.

"I’m a kind and loving person," he said.

But the statements of Cameron’s mother, Barbara Tayama; his father, Darrell Masnayon; and Cameron himself, are what hit home when it was time for Judge Barcinas to make his decision.

Read Barbara Tayama's Victim Impact Statement HERE.

Cameron’s mother, Barbara detailed in her statement the suffering her family underwent and the extent of her son’s injuries. She noted that as a result of his injuries, Cameron lost his sense of smell, his sense of taste and is completely deaf in one ear.

He will live with short term memory and the frontal lobe of Cameron’s head that deals with emotion was damaged, causing him to undergo long-term intense psychiatric counseling, she said..

"This person had every intention to end my son’s life," she said.

She acknowledged that the defendant, Michael Rosal, has rights even as a defendant, but she asked Judge Barcinas to consider her son’s rights as a victim as well.

“I am here to ask the court that the same rights be extended to the true victim, Cameron,” she pleaded.

She also had a message for Michael Rosal, telling him that she has forgiven him and even encouraged him to find a purpose in his life when he gets out of prison.

To her son, she said, she had two promises for him: “I will always love you and I will never give up on you.”

Cameron’s father, Darryl Masnayon, a Guam Police officer, was less sympathetic with Rosal. “For me, I don’t know if I’ll ever forgive him,” the father stated.

As a police officer, Masnayon also expressed a sense of guilt in his son’s ordeal. “It hurts that I’m protecting people out there, but I can’t even protect my own son.”

Finally, Cameron himself took the stand and went face to face with the man accused of causing all his pain and suffering. Cameron acknowledged that he had called Michael Rosal out to fight, for which he apologized, but he also had a message for Michael: “I forgive you.”

“I hope all of us walk away as better people,” he told Rosal.

When PNC spoke with Cameron’s mother, Barbara in March, she told us that Michael Rosal’s family has never made any contact with her or her family. Today, that gap has finally been closed as Rosal's mother was seen tearfully apologizing to Cameron and his mother. The three also exchanged embraces.

When it came time to sentence Michael, Judge Barcinas said he took into consideration the fact that Michael had been on pre-trial release in another aggravated assault case, at the time he brutally beat Cameron. By statute Michael could have received a maximum sentence of 10 years, but because he took a plea deal, that range was reduced to 3 to 7 years.

Because of the aggravating factors in the case, Judge Barcinas said, he sentenced Michael to the full 7 years with 3 years parole. He also ordered that Michael take an anger management course.

A restitution hearing for Michael Rosal has been scheduled for September 27 at 3 pm.