On appeal from Superior Court of New Jersey, Chancery Division, Family Part, Atlantic County, Docket No. FV-01-000216-10-C.
NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION
Before Judges Skillman and Wefing.
This is an appeal from a final restraining order, entered on August 26, 2009, in an action brought under the Prevention of Domestic Violence Law, N.J.S.A. 2C:25-17 to -35.
The parties had a dating relationship. At the time, plaintiff was nineteen years old and defendant was a sixty-year- old married man. Defendant was, or had been, plaintiff's taekwondo instructor.
Defendant's wife became aware of the relationship sometime in 2009, and plaintiff told her parents about the relationship on or about June 21, 2009. Two days later, on or about June 23, 2009, defendant and his wife and plaintiff and her parents had a conference telephone call. At the end of this conversation, the parties agreed that they would not have any further communication or contact with each other.
On June 25, 2009, defendant's wife called plaintiff's mother. After that conversation, defendant's wife told defendant plaintiff's mother said to her that defendant was "still professing [his] love for [plaintiff]." This made defendant extremely agitated because he was attempting to reconcile with his wife.
Defendant then placed five calls to plaintiff's mother and plaintiff. When those calls were not answered, defendant left a series of nasty messages, directed primarily at plaintiff's mother. In one of the messages left on the Blackberry of plaintiff's mother, defendant stated:
You can't hide from me you bitch. I told you I want to know word for word what lies you told my wife. And you can call me back and you can say that to me and we can put [an] end to [this]. Or you can keep hiding from me and one picture a day will go out to the RST group and I will put up a nice web site so everybody can see all about your daughter. There's nothing left to the imagination, sweetheart. Now don't fuck with me.
Defendant's last nasty message was left on plaintiff's telephone. This message, which was the basis of the trial court's finding that defendant had committed an act of domestic violence, stated:
I betcha none of you are taking my calls. None of you have the goddam guts to speak to me after your goddam stupid piece of shit mother called my wife telling her a bunch of bullshit. Just trying to fuck me up. I mean I don't know ...