WAILUKU - "Don't text the ex."
Second Circuit Judge Rhonda Loo delivered that message Wednesday to Kihei resident Arthur Cachola, 43, who had spent more than three months in jail after violating a court order by sending 54 text messages to his ex-wife in an eight-day period.
He was arrested in April after the woman reported the threatening and harassing text messages, which were sent while a court order for protection was in effect that prohibited Cachola from contacting his former wife, said Deputy Prosecutor Kim Whitworth.
Loo ordered Cachola, as part of his sentence Wednesday, to make a list of 54 reasons he should not text his ex-wife.
The judge noted that the text messages included a photo of a half-naked woman that Cachola represented to be a 13-year-old girl. Attorneys said the photo was actually of a stripper.
"Your behavior was extreme, teenage and juvenile," Loo told Cachola. "You did it to hurt her, to be mean to her, to abuse her.
"A 43-year-old who's sending 54 texts in an eight-day period is really out of control."
Cachola had pleaded no contest to two counts of first-degree terroristic threatening and four counts each of violating an order for protection and harassment by stalking.
Both the defense and prosecution recommended no additional jail for Cachola, who had been incarcerated for 105 days before being released on supervision when he changed his pleas July 31.
"To your credit, it sounds like 105 days really did some good," Loo told Cachola. "You kind of got it."
After he was released, Cachola completed residential drug treatment and has had no contact with his ex-wife, said defense attorney Jon Apo.
"In terms of deterrence, Arthur gets it," Apo said.
He said Cachola had been a stable and hardworking family man providing for his children before his drug use. "It was like injecting evil into his life," Apo said. "He got into that vicious, negative cycle."
Sending the text messages was a "desperate, clouded, out-of-control attempt to gain control of his otherwise out-of-control situation," Apo said.
"He acknowledges all those texts amounted to nothing more than harassment . . . and plain criminal behavior."
In court, Cachola apologized. "I wasn't in my right mind at the time," he said. "Right now, I'm a better citizen."
Following a plea agreement between the defense and prosecution, Loo placed Cachola on four years' probation. He was ordered not to consume alcohol or illegal drugs.
Loo also ordered Cachola not to threaten, abuse or text-message his ex-wife.
Apo asked the judge to consider reducing the number of reasons Cachola would have to list for not texting his ex-wife. Apo said he himself would have trouble coming up with that many reasons.
Loo declined to reduce the number.
"If Mr. Cachola's fingers can text 54 messages to his ex-wife, he can definitely write to the court 54 different reasons why he shouldn't be texting her," Loo said.
* Lila Fujimoto can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.