Makana Milho, a 21-year-old trans woman from Honolulu, secretly recorded her supervisor’s sexual advances and streamed them on Facebook Live.
Makana was serving out a six-day community service punishment after being charged with the theft of a handbag.
For the first few days, she worked hard cleaning public toilets under supervision – but, on the fifth day, she had a different supervisor.
Harold Villanueva Jr proceeded to drive Makana to an isolated park, where he, as expected, set her to work on cleaning the community toilets.
However, at around 7am, Makana heard someone urinating in one of the stalls of the men’s bathroom as she cleaned. Soon afterwards, her 47-year-old supervisor allegedly appeared and pinched her bum.
He then proceeded to tell her that he would let her clock off early if she agreed to perform oral sex on him.
Speaking to the Daily Beast, Makana explained that his advances left her feeling as if “the universe was spinning.”
She added: “I thought he could do basically anything to me. I felt my power was stripped away from me.”
After Villanueva Jr warned her that nobody would believe the word of a “felon” over him, Makana discreetly began recording his advances on her phone and pressed ‘Live’, so that the conversation was broadcast to all of her Facebook friends.
In the footage, Villanueva Jr can be heard asking Makana about her sex change operation, before revealing that he had lured other community service workers – including other transgender women - into performing sex acts on the job.
He went on to recall how one of his victims had complained about his advances, but that nobody had listened to her.
“She said that I would proposition her… and all that kind of stuff. I said, ‘Ah, we was just talking casually, you know.’"
Makana tagged Honolulu Police Department in the Facebook video, which quickly amounted 197,000 views.
“I was doing my community service & this city and county of Honolulu employee told me to do sexual acts for him,” she wrote in her post.
While many people praised Makana for her quick-thinking, some social media trolls began sending her hateful messages, accusing her of prostitution and of encouraging the man.
She later removed the footage, telling the Daily Beast: “People were saying it’s my fault.”
Despite this, the video has served its purpose, providing police with enough evidence to arrest Villanueva Jr and charge him with fourth-degree sexual assault.
He is also under investigation for the comments he made in the video, which saw him claim that he allowed community service workers to go home early in exchange for sexual favours.
The community service program itself is also being investigated thoroughly.
Makana’s lawyer, Myles Breiner, says that she would have lost her deferral of prosecution and may have gone to prison for five years had she not completed her service.
But without the Facebook Live footage, it would have been a ‘he said, she said’ situation and difficult to prove.
Makana, who still has one day of community service to complete, agreed with her lawyer.
She told Hawaii News Now: “He could have easily called my PO (probation officer) and made something up and I could have gotten into more trouble.”
The 21-year-old added that she hopes her video ensures that the Department of Parks and Recreation employee is “held accountable for his actions”.
Images: iStock, Facebook