WAILUKU - After failing to complete a drug treatment program, a Wailuku man was sentenced April 10 to a five-year prison term for breaking into a tourist's rental car and stealing belongings last year.
Aaron Cabasug, 40, had been released from jail in December so he could enter a residential drug treatment program as part of a plea agreement recommending he be sentenced to probation.
But 2nd Circuit Judge Rhonda Loo said Cabasug violated the plea agreement when he didn't complete the residential treatment and left the program. "You were given a golden opportunity," Loo told Cabasug.
Cabasug had pleaded no contest to first-degree unauthorized entry into a motor vehicle, second-degree theft, unauthorized possession of confidential personal information, two counts of fraudulent use of a credit card, theft of a credit card, two counts of second-degree theft, a reduced charge of third-degree identity theft, fourth-degree criminal property damage, third-degree promotion of a dangerous drug and possessing drug paraphernalia.
Most of the charges stemmed from a car break-in July 19 while two tourists and their children were at Olivine Pools in Kahakuloa. A car window was smashed and items removed including an iPhone, identification and credit cards.
About an hour later, the credit cards were used at Game Stop and Home Depot in Kahului.
A Global Positioning System on the phone was used to track it to Cabasug's residence on Mission Street, where he was found with some of the stolen property, police said. His then-girlfriend Cynthia Cameron also was arrested as a co-defendant. Earlier this year, she was sentenced to five years' probation.
Defense attorney Benjamin Acob said Cabasug's crimes were "drug driven" and committed to obtain money for his drug habit.
Based on circumstances including his prior record, Cabasug realized he had been offered the "deal of a lifetime" with the chance for drug treatment and probation, Acob said.
Cabasug said he was going through outpatient drug treatment. He said he was arrested Tuesday night while attending a class session after the person who had posted his bail decided not to continue with the bail agreement.
Because Cabasug had violated his plea agreement and in light of his criminal history, Deputy Prosecutor Justine Hura asked that he be sentenced to the prison term.
She said Cabasug's prior criminal record includes convictions in Iowa, Minnesota, Oregon and California dating to 1993. His convictions include ones for first-degree burglary, escape from jail, attempted first-degree assault and felony damage to property, Hura said.
"Obviously, he has demons that he's dealing with and those do involve drugs," she said. "But it also involves criminality.
"He was given a unique agreement, an amazing shot to better himself and to be free. At this point, he's earned himself that prison term."
In ordering the prison sentence, Loo told Cabasug: "It seems that you are at extreme high risk to reoffend. You have been incarcerated for most of your life."
Cabasug was ordered to pay $1,197 in restitution.
In another sentencing last week, a 42-year-old Wailuku man was given a chance to keep convictions off his record if he complies with court requirements for the next five years.
Mark Humberstone also was ordered to stay away from Lani Place in Wailuku and two residents at the address where the offenses occurred in August.
Acob said Humberstone's involvement in drugs at the time led him to the house, where he made the mistake of entering after getting permission from another person there. Police recovered a "minor amount" of drugs when Humberstone was arrested, Acob said.
Deputy Prosecutor Mark Simonds said there was a dispute over methamphetamine when Humberstone grabbed a machete, took an aggressive stance and wielded the weapon toward two people at the house. A machete was found in Humberstone's car, Simonds said.
Humberstone had pleaded no contest to unauthorized entry into a dwelling, third-degree promotion of a dangerous drug and possessing drug paraphernalia, with charges of first-degree terroristic threatening dismissed.
Humberstone said he was working and had learned from the more than five months he previously spent in jail.
In granting Humberstone's request for a deferral of his convictions, Loo said he has a minimal prior record and his probation officer reported he has a positive attitude.
Loo said she was concerned that Humberstone thought he didn't need drug treatment.
"Addiction is like a wound that festers," she said. "You can treat it yourself and hope it heals. But a lot of times, you need the help of a doctor."
* Lila Fujimoto can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.