Stalked woman felt like a prisoner in her own home

From the courts
From the courts

A stalker who preyed upon a woman walking her dog has been given a restraining order.

Stephen Carr, 43, of Bobbin Mill Close, Todmorden, admitted harrassing the woman whom he “took a fancy to” after watching her walk her dog near to his home.

Prosecutor Barbara Lennon read the victim’s impact statement which said Carr had pursued conversation with the victim who initially replied out of politeness.

She said after two weeks the conversation became more intense as Carr interrogated her with questions about her family. Calderdale magistrates heard how this then developed into sexual advances from Carr who invited her in for coffee and was reported as saying: “If I touch you all over will you get me done for sexual assault?”

He then asked the victim to have sex with him and then threw himself on the floor, grabbing her trouser leg, begging for sex.

The victim’s statement said: “I feel like a prisoner in my own home. I have had to change my dog-walking route and no longer leave my doors unlocked. I feel vulnerable and worry for mine and my family’s safety.”

The court heard that Carr had said to the woman: “You’re not the sweetest apple in the tree but you will do”.

Mr Carr who was released on bail on January 30 admitted breaching the conditions when he was seen by neighbours standing on the street of the victim’s staring into her kitchen, that same night.

He was then arrested and kept in custody.

Sam Jackson, mitigating, said in Carr’s basis of plea, he admitted he had been drinking heavily and could not remember the details of his pursuit of the woman.

He said: “Mr Carr was a single man, living in a bed-sit who wanted a relationship with a female and rather than going on the internet he met females and engaged them in conversation.”

He said Carr recognised his quest for the female had gone too far.

He was released from prison, having served four weeks, on Tuesday and magistrates gave him a two-year restraining order, a 12-month community order with 200 hours of unpaid community work and 30 hours study, £85 costs and a £60 victim surcharge to be deducted from his benefits.