Probable cause found to try man accused of machete attack


The Superior Court has found probable cause to try a man for aggravated assault, among other charges, after he allegedly assaulted another man with a machete.

Superior Court Associate Judge Kenneth Govendo found probable cause to try John Chandler Hamilton for aggravated assault and battery, assault with a dangerous weapon, and disturbing the peace. Hamilton, 35, was ordered to return to court today for his arraignment.

According to Saipan Tribune archives, Hamilton is accused of striking an acquaintance with a machete in a fit of rage and leaving a deep laceration on the victim’s hand.

Police reports state that on Jan. 18, at around 7:55am, officers were flagged down by a man who wanted to report a disturbing the peace incident. The man was brought to the Commonwealth Health Center for the deep laceration on his hand.

In an interview with the victim, police learned that he was at the Bank of Guam traffic light in Garapan at around 7am that day and was heading south when he saw a Kia Soul in his rearview mirror that he claims to recognize as Hamilton’s vehicle.

The man said that Hamilton was tailing him, bumper to bumper, which prompted him to pull his vehicle to the side of the road.

When he got down, he said Hamilton got down too holding a machete.

The victim stated that he saw Hamilton pull off the machete’s cover and from about two to three feet away, Hamilton swung the machete at him. The victim said he managed to block the machete with his right hand and got cut on his ring finger. Police noted that the victim had a two-inch long cut on his right ring finger, which was covered in blood.

The victim said he pushed Hamilton away, forcing him to drop the machete, and then he ran back to his car and drove away.

The victim stated that he does not know why Hamilton attacked him since they had just hung out just a few nights before on Jan. 15 and they had no problems.

Police later found the machete on the side of the road near the Gold Beach Hotel along Beach Road.

Kimberly Bautista Esmores | Reporter
Kimberly Bautista Esmores has covered a wide range of news beats, including the community, housing, crime, and more. She now covers sports for the Saipan Tribune. Contact her at

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