An Instagram influencer was fatally shot near a Hawaii mall by her husband two days after a judge granted a restraining order against the man, who was later found dead in an apparent suicide , according to authorities and court documents.
The shooting happened Friday in a parking lot near the Pearlridge Center in Waimalu, near Honolulu.
Honolulu police responded to a “suspicious circumstance” in the parking lot shortly after 10 a.m. Friday and found a 33-year-old woman, later identified as Theresa Cachuela, suffering from a gunshot wound, Lt. Deena Thoemmes said to journalists.
A child was present during the shooting, police said.
Theresa Cachuela, nicknamed “Bunny Bontiti” by her 20,000 Instagram followers, was pronounced dead at the scene. No one else was found injured in the area, Thoemmes said.
The suspect, identified as Jason Cachuela, 44, had fled the scene and was later found dead in an area behind a residence in Waipahu, a town about five miles from the mall, Thoemmes said. Police said a firearm was found at the scene.
The case is classified as first degree murder and the investigation is ongoing.
Thoemmes said the shooting was “not a random act” because the victim and suspect were a couple.
A judge granted Theresa Cachuela a temporary restraining order against Jason Cachuela, according to online court documents. They were together for almost 11 years, according to court filings.
According to his motion for a temporary restraining order, filed on December 8, Jason Cachuela allegedly threatened suicide in front of his wife and children on December 6.
He allegedly took her somewhere alone and put a knife to her throat, leaving her traumatized and scared, she wrote in the petition. The next morning, Theresa Cachuela said her husband showed up at her house to apologize, but continued to make suicide threats.
On the evening of Dec. 7, Jason Cachuela allegedly returned to his wife’s home and attempted to break into her garage, according to the petition. Theresa Cachuela said in the petition that he threatened to kill himself in his garage when she refused to approach him, leading her to call 911. Police then conducted a well-being check.
While leaving her son in the garage around 6 a.m. on Dec. 8, Theresa Cachuela said she found Jason Cachuela hiding under her car. Once again, she called 911 to report the incident, according to the petition, which said he possessed firearms.
Jason Cachuela received the notice on December 19, and the temporary restraining order became official on December 20.
Both appeared in court that day and agreed to a one-year order, which will expire on December 20, 2024. Under the agreement, Jason Cachuela was prohibited from contacting Theresa Cachuela unless he was a minor child, and he was ordered to give up all firearms.
It’s unclear how he was in possession of a gun during Friday’s shooting.
NBC News contacted an attorney who represented Jason Cachuela in this case.
Lucita Ani-Nihoa, Theresa Cachuela’s mother, told Honolulu’s NBC affiliate KHNL that she was meeting her daughter at the Pearlridge Center when she learned her daughter had been shot.
She said Theresa Cachuela’s 8-year-old daughter was the child who witnessed the shooting.
“It was his youngest daughter who saw everything tragically,” Ani-Nihoa told the station. “She is traumatized. She has so much faith, this little girl. She just started praying.
Theresa Cachuela, a mother of three, had told relatives that she had been abused by her husband and was receiving help from agencies that support victims of domestic violence, according to Ani-Nihoa.
“She wanted to leave him but he didn’t accept it. He tried to control everything…where she would go, what she would do,” his mother said.
The family created an online fundraiser to cover funeral costs and support their children.
If you or someone you know is in crisis, call or text 988 to reach Suicide and Crisis Lifeline or live chat on 988lifeline.org. You can also visit SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources for additional support.
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