APPEAL FROM THE FAMILY COURT OF THE FIRST CIRCUIT (FC-CR. NO. 10-1-1102)
NOT FOR PUBLICATION IN WEST'S HAWAII REPORTS AND PACIFIC REPORTER
SUMMARY DISPOSITION ORDER
(By: Nakamura, C.J., Fujise and Reifurth, JJ.)
Defendant-Appellant Melanie Molina (Molina) appeals the October 21, 2010 Judgment entered by the Family Court of the First Circuit (family court)*fn1 convicting her of Harassment of her five-year-old son, in violation of Hawaii Revised Statutes (HRS) § 711-1106(1)(a) (Supp. 2011).
On appeal, Molina contends that the family court erred in convicting her where (1) insufficient evidence existed of the requisite state of mind, (2) insufficient evidence existed to negative the parental discipline defense, and, (3) insufficient evidence existed that Molina's use of force resulted in bleeding in the nose and facial area.
Based on a careful review of the points on appeal, the arguments made, the record, and the applicable authority, we resolve Molina's contentions as follows.
Harassment under HRS § 711-1106(1)(a) states:
(1) A person commits the offense of harassment if, with intent to harass, annoy, or alarm any other person, that person:
(a) Strikes, shoves, kicks, or otherwise touches another person in an offensive manner or subjects the other person to offensive physical contact[.]
Evidence reflects that Child was five years old; Molina was frustrated with having her five children with her that day; Child was not obeying Molina; Molina observed the Child crouch down in anticipation of being hit; Molina admitted in her statement to police that she "slapped her child once" and in testimony confirmed that she "hit him only on the back and the butt, buttocks with a backhand"; Child's nose bled and Child was crying, with redness of his face and blood visible on Child's face, shirt, and forehead. Where the family court did not find Mother's version credible, as was its province, *fn2 under these circumstances, sufficient evidence existed to infer Molina's "intent to harass, annoy, or alarm" Child. State v. Stocker, 90 Hawaii 85, 92, 976 P.2d 399, 406 (1999) (recognizing "substantial evidence that, after becoming angry and 'yelling' at Shane, Stocker slapped him in the face" and, based thereon, holding "that the family court could reasonably have inferred that Stocker intended his conduct to 'annoy' or 'alarm' Shane"). The parental discipline defense arises from HRS § 703- 309 (1993), which states in pertinent part, as follows:
§ 703-309. Use of force by persons with special responsibility for care, discipline, or safety of others.
The use of force upon or toward the person of another is justifiable under the following circumstances:
(1) The actor is the parent or guardian or other person similarly responsible for the general care and supervision of a minor, or a person acting at the request of the parent, guardian, or other responsible person, and:
(a) The force is employed with due regard for the age and size of the minor and is reasonably related to the purpose of safeguarding or promoting the welfare of the minor, including the ...