Man Sentenced to 41 Months for Assault at Haleakalā NP

November 14, 2018, 8:36 AM HST · Updated November 14, 8:37 AM

Visitor to Maui’s Haleakalā Found Guilty of Assault by Strangulation. PC: Haleakalā / background Image: Chris Archer

A man convicted of assaulting his spouse by strangulation at Haleakalā National Park last year, was sentenced three-and-a-half years in prison yesterday.

Matthew Berckmann, 44, was also ordered to serve three years of supervised release in addition to the jail term.

The charges stem from an incident at the Hosmer Grove Campground on Oct. 18, 2017, in which Berckmann reportedly threatened his wife with a large kitchen knife while pinning her to the ground by holding his forearm against her throat, according to information presented in court and provided by Kenji M. Price, US Attorney for the District of Hawaiʻi.

Two individuals witnessed the assault and contacted 911.


Berckmann was taken into custody by a Park Ranger, aided by two Maui Police Department officers. The case was prosecuted in federal court, as the United States has jurisdiction for crimes committed within national parks.

The sentence was handed down by senior US District Judge Susan Oki Mollway. The investigation was led by the National Park Service, with assistance from the FBI and the Maui Police Department. Assistant US Attorneys Michael Albanese and Marion Percell handled the prosecution.



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