By Johnnie Rosario
(Tumon, Guam) A 66-year-old grandmother of Astumbo Elementary School students who were bullied allegedly made a threat yesterday to a school employee to shoot any bullies, who hurt her grandchildren. Faye Marie Kang denied she made the threat.
On the other side of the law, Andrew Castro - a politically-connected federal drug felon in his 40s whose father was a high ranking police officer - was caught on tape in early January attempting to burglarize, terrorize, and assault his neighbor in Mangilao.
Ms. Kang was arrested on the same day.
Mr. Castro was arrested days after his victim made his second criminal complaint to the Guam Police Department, on January 16, 2020, according to police spokesman Sgt. Paul Tapao.
Ms. Kang allegedly made a threat. Mr. Castro was caught on camera actually carrying out his. But, for whatever reason, they were treated differently by the criminal justice system.
Ms. Kang was magistrated in local court, the attorney general's office seeking felony charges against her, including terroristic conduct with a special allegation of crime against the community.
Mr. Castro was booked and released on a misdemeanor criminal mischief slap on the wrist. Whether he ever will be charged is unknown at this time; he was not magistrated.
To be fair, Ms. Kang's alleged crime, which she denies, resulted in the disruption of classes and operations at Astumbo Elementary School and allegedly was a threat of violence toward kids. Mr. Castro, on the other hand, showed up to both the front and back doors of his victim's home, broke both doors, attempted to enter the home, took an offensive stance to assault his victim, and damaged the victim's family's property. He even assaulted his girlfriend while he was at it - all of this caught on tape.
And what of the underlying allegations Ms. Kang had made? The purpose of her phone call to Astumbo Elementary School that led to the report to police of her alleged threat?
According to the prosecutor's declaration of probable cause against Ms. Kang, she was frustrated at a lack of action by school officials to protect her grandson against bullies. She was worried for her grandchildren's safety at the school.
"I’m concerned about that and we are having the administrator look into this bullying allegation," DOE superintendent Jon Fernandez said. "However, threatening the alleged bullies is not an appropriate response."
Mr. Fernandez said that DOE had a responsibility to protect all of its students, even if it was an alleged threat relayed by a third party.
"The call that was made went to a staff member at the central office who felt concerned enough to report it to a deputy," the superintendent said. "At that point, our protocol for alerting the GPD and the school was executed, resulting in the shelter-in-place directive until police arrived."
Like many who have chimed in on this matter empathizing with Ms. Kang, Mr. Fernandez did raise his own concerns about bullying from the perspective of a public school parent himself:
"As a parent, yes, I am concerned if any parent or grandparent believes that their child is being bullied and that the school is failing to address it. I’m working to ensure that the school administrator updates me in this situation so we can address it."